An imam of a mosque in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, was beaten up by a local man for refusing to chase away an evil spirit from his body, the Emirate Al Youm newspaper said.
"The man claimed that he was possessed by a jinn and wanted the imam to exorcise him by reading verses of Quran. The imam refused, saying it was not his duty," the newspaper quoted the son of the beaten imam as saying.
The man attacked the imam after evening prayer. The attacker approached his victim from behind, banged the man's head against the mosque's steel door and started kicking the unconscious body.
The imam was rushed to hospital after the attack.
Notions of demonic possession and exorcism are common for many religions, including Islam. However, many Muslim clerics are critical of exorcism practices as they doubt the ability of demons and spirits, known as jinns, to possess a human body.
DUBAI, March 30 (RIA Novosti)