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    » 09/13/2012, 00.00

    EGYPT

    Egyptian Catholic Church spokesman: Pope must go to Lebanon even if the situation is tense



    Fr. Rafic Greiche underlines the extreme importance of the Pope's trip as a bearer of peace to a Middle East victim of hatred and war. For the priest the attacks sparked by satirical film about Muhammad are against the United States, not against Christians. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood launches a major protest for September 14 in Cairo and other cities of the country. The Egyptian Copts criticize the film.

    Cairo (AsiaNews) - The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood have called the population to rally together on Sept. 14 against the satirical film about Muhammad entitled "Innounce of Muslims" produced in the United States and released in recent days on the internet in English and Arabic . Protests are still being held in Cairo and Benghazi (Libya) against the film. Yesterday, an attack by Islamist militants on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi killed the American ambassador in Libya and three other officials of his staff.

    The protests planned by Egyptian Islamists, could also involve other Islamic countries. The date coincides with the visit of Benedict XVI to Lebanon, to be held September 14 to 16. According to Fr. Rafic Greiche, spokesman for the Egyptian Catholic Church, "The trip to Lebanon should remain on the agenda even if the situation in the region is very tense. His visit is a great opportunity to show that peace is the only possible alternative to hatred and war. Benedict XVI's presence a few kilometers from Syria is a message of solidarity and dialogue for the Middle East and the Christian and Muslim populations that are the protagonists of the Arab Spring and the Islamic factions fighting each other. "

    He stresses that the protests that took place in these days in front of the U.S. embassies in Cairo and Benghazi have targeted the United States. "It is no coincidence - he says - that these events have been organized on the day of the anniversary of the September 11 attacks. For many Islamists this was an opportunity to give greater echo to their voice. Nevertheless, it should be noted that among the people who demonstrated outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, there were also several Coptic Christians. People protested against the United States holding it responsible for this offensive film, not against Christians. Countries that have lived under dictatorial regimes do not take freedom of expression into consideration, they think that everything is scrutinized by the public authorities. " Fr. Greiche explains that Christians respect all religions, this film does not represent the thinking of the Christian community in Egypt. The film was made with the cooperation of the Coptic Orthodox emigrants to the United States, but the Egyptian Coptic community has denied any connection with these people.


    However, the priest points out that Muslims and the whole world rises up whenever Muhammad is offended, but the same does not occur when other religious symbols, especially Christian, are the object of contempt and insult from Islamic radicals in Egypt. "After the fall of Mubarak - said Fr. Greiche - the Salafis and the Muslim Brotherhood have filled the newsstands and shops with newspapers, magazines, books that contain entire passages against Christians. Each week " The Voice of the People "contains as many as 10 pages full of insults and attacks against Christians and this is common in other newspapers and televisions, but nobody talks about it or is scandalized by it. " (S.C.)

     

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    See also

    10/10/2011 EGYPT - ISLAM
    Cairo, violence against Copts: 24 dead and 212 injured
    A peaceful demonstration attacked by thugs and the army. Tank deployed, crushing some of the demonstrators. Christians and moderate Muslims accuse the army of pandering to fundamentalists. Curfew imposed. Anti-Christian violence "advertising" for extremists ahead of political November elections.

    03/01/2011 ISLAM - VATICAN - EGYPT
    Europe and Islam in the wake of attacks against Copts in Alexandria
    Absurd accusations against the Coptic community of keeping two women who converted to Islam captive. The psychosis of a country that prohibits changing of religion. Islamic attacks against Shenouda, the criticism of the imam of Al-Azhar against Benedict XVI. Europe must open up channels for cultural dialogue with Islamic countries, rejecting secularism and fundamentalism. Just like the pope said.

    16/02/2006 vatican - lebanon
    Prime Minister Siniora illustrates Lebanon's difficult situation to the Pope

    In an audience at the Vatican this morning, Lebanese p.m. spoke to the Pope of his meeting with the various religious leaders in Lebanon, the Mohammad caricatures, attacks in the Christian quarter of Beirut and violence among various religious groups.  The Vatican reaffirms its closeness to "that noble Nation."



    11/12/2010 EGYPT
    Protests over block on church of the Pyramids. "The government discriminates against Christians"
    168 Copts are still in jail (including 20 children) arrested during the demonstration on November 24 against the block on construction of the church opposed by radical Muslims. Appeal to Mubarak to punish those who authorized the use of weapons.

    25/11/2010 EGYPT
    Two Copts killed in the battle for the "church of the Pyramids"
    Thousands of Christian protesters surrounded the governorate in Giza to protest against the blockade of the construction of the only church in the area. Strong reaction of the security forces. Fundamentalist Muslims are opposed to the churches’ completion and put pressure on local authorities.



    Editor's choices

    CHINA - VATICAN
    Vatican silence over Shanghai’s Mgr Ma Daqin causing confusion and controversy

    Bernardo Cervellera

    For some, Mgr Ma’s blog post praising the Patriotic Association and acknowledging his mistakes is nothing but “dirt”. For others, he chose humiliation for the “sake of his diocese”. Many wonder why the Holy See has remained silent about the article’s content and the bishop’s persecution. Some suspect the Vatican views the episode in positive terms. Yet, the Ma Daqin affair raises a major question. Has Benedict XVI’s Letter to Chinese Catholics (which describes the Patriotic Association as “incompatible with Catholic doctrine”) been abolished? If it has, who did it? A journey of compromises without truth is full of risks.


    CHINA – VATICAN
    Mgr Ma Daqin: the text of his “confession”

    Mons. Taddeo Ma Daqin

    Four years after quitting the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association, the bishop of Shanghai “admits” his faults on his blog, praising the organisation that controls the Church. We publish his article, almost in its entirety. Translation by AsiaNews.


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