04/13/2017, 09.19
EGYPT

Egypt, suicide bomber who struck the church in Alexandria identified

The Interior Ministry reveals the name of attacker, discovered through DNA. Mahmoud Abdallah Hasan Mubarak, already known to the authorities and on a list of "suspects on the run". Continuing investigations to identify even the suicide bomber in Tanta. Coptic Orthodox, Catholics and Anglicans celebrate low key Easter in sign of mourning for the victims. 

Cairo (AsiaNews) - The Egyptian Ministry of the Interior has identified one of the suicide bombers who April 9 last struck the church of Tanta and Alessandria,causing 45 dead and over a hundred injured; the explosions were claimed by the Islamic State (IS), who also announced further violence against the Christian community.

In particular, the authorities have revealed the name of the aggressor that struck in Alexandria and assured "further efforts" to trace the suicide bomber who blew himself up in Tanta, during the celebration of Palm Sunday.

Ministry sources say that " tests carried out on the remains of the DNA [of the corpse] recovered on site" show that the author of the massacre at St. Mark's Church, in Alexandria, was Mahmoud Abdallah Hasan Mubarak. "He was born in 1986 in Qena, in the south, - says the source - and lived in the Suez province."

The identification would take place by comparing the DNA found at the scene with those of a list "of suspects on the run".

The alleged bomber was working for an oil company and was linked to a "terrorist network" attack against the Coptic Cathedral of St. Mark in Abassiya in Cairo last December. "The security services - concludes the ministerial source - continue their efforts to identify the suicide bomber who carried out the attack on the church of St. George in Tanta".

Meanwhile, the Christian community in Egypt, under a three month a state of emergency in accordance with provisions of President al-Sisi in response to the attacks, is preparing to celebrate a low key Easter in sign of mourning for the victims. Yesterday the Coptic Orthodox Church announced that there will only be celebrations on Easter Sunday, while all other rites will be cancelled. Similarly the Catholics and Anglicans have called off the Easter Vigil on Saturday night.

The Christian leaders explain that "considering the situation" all the festivities "were cancelled, with the exception of one celebration" of the Easter Mass. Easter will also be dedicated to the memory and prayer for the victims of the attacks. The traditional delivery of sweets to the children by the Copt Patriarch Tawadros II has also been cancelled.

As anticipated to AsiaNews by Fr. Rafic Greiche, spokesman for the Egyptian Catholic Church, the attacks have cast "a shadow" on Easter and stolen "the joy of the feast." However, Pope Francis has confirmed his visit later this month, hoping it will restore confidence and calm to the affected communities who fear "new attacks” in the future .

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