11/02/2013, 00.00
EGYPT - ISLAM
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Cairo, Muslim Brotherhood violence targets Church of Virgin Mary in Zaytoun

Islamists tear down banners and spray insults against the patriarch, Copts and the Armed on its walls. An attempt to storm the building is stopped. The church is a place of pilgrimage for Christians and Muslims because of an apparition of the Virgin Mary

Cairo (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Egypt's churches came under attack once again yesterday when  a procession of students linked to the Muslim Brotherhood attacked the church of the Virgin Mary in Zaytoun , in the eastern part of Cairo, which marks the site of a famous apparition of Our Lady . The group - which came directly from Friday prayers in the mosque next door - clashed with some young Christians, who prevented the Islamists from storming the building. Thanks to the intervention of some passers-by, who calmed the brawl, a more serious incident of violence was avoided, but the situation remains tense. On 20 October last 5 people were killed in an attack on the Church of the Virgin Mary in Al- Warraq .

The Zaytoun attack was filmed and posted online.  The video shows the Islamists marching on the place of worship, shouting slogans against the Coptic Orthodox Patriarch Tawadros . On arriving in the square in front of the Church they are seen tearing down a banner from the front of the church and covering the façade with graffiti insulting the patriarch, the Copts and the Armed Forces .

Local sources said that every Friday after the midday prayer, the Islamists always pass in front of the church hurling insults and anti-Christian slogans . To avoid problems Christians bar the doors of the building. Near the church there is the el- Aziz Bellah mosque, whose faithful militate in the ranks of the Muslim Brotherhood. Yesterday, Zaytoun district police arrested a man who had over well 108 thousand posters insulting Christians and the army hidden in his home.

As is the case with the church of the Virgin Mary in al- Waaraq, the Zaytoun church is famous throughout Egypt for a miracle: on June 2, 1968 Our Lady appeared on the dome. From then on , the place became a pilgrimage site for Christians and Muslims .

 

 

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