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  • » 01/21/2012, 00.00

    EGYPT

    Egyptian extremists against Copts, two wounded, houses burned and churches attacked



    The Salafis attack the religious minority to prevent them from voting. In the raid-Rahmaniya Kebly a boy was hit by a bullet, one man has facial injuries. Police and firefighters intentional delay their intervention. In the province of Qaliubia a Christian place of worship attacked.
    Cairo (AsiaNews) - Anti-Christian violence continues in Egypt, according to local sources, the episodes are linked to the attempt of fundamentalist Islamic fringe - Salafis - to block the vote of the religious minority in the next election. On 19 January, a mob attacked the Coptic Christian community of the village of Kebly-Rahmaniya, near the town of Nag Hammadi, Qena governorate, Upper Egypt. The assailants, chanting "Allahu Akbar" (God is Great) attacked and burned down houses, huts, shops and businesses (click here to see the video). The raid was also caused two injuries: a 16 year old boy, struck by a bullet and a 40 year old man with facial injuries.

    Witnesses quoted by Assyrian International News Agency (AINA) report that Egyptian security forces did not intervene promptly to repel the onslaught and defend the Christians. Even the teams of firefighters delayed their intervention, arriving only 90 minutes after the assault, and when most of the buildings were already in flames. A source adds that a hut belonging to a Coptic Christian was burned to make room for the construction of a mosque. Moreover in the area there are now 300 Muslim places of worship, compared to only one Christian church even though Christians are 50% of the local population.

    According to the Copts, the anti-Christian violence is related to the upcoming parliamentary elections: the Salafis, in fact, want to prevent the religious minority from voting which, with its 20 thousand members, can shift the balance of power in the area. The Copts are close to the Muslim moderate wing, which opposes the Islamist front. A witness confirmed that "no Copt from Rahmaniya-Kebly could vote" and that "the Salafis will win the elections."

    In a second incident, which also occurred January 19, the Salafists and Muslim Brotherhood - together - broke into the church of Abu Makka in Bahteem, Qaliubia, informing members of the congregation that the place of Christian worship is illegal. An extremist also said that the 1,300 square meter building "is perfect for building a mosque and a hospital." The local bishop was to inaugurate the church and celebrate the first Mass, has suspended all ceremonies for security reasons, sparking the anger and disappointment of the whole congregation.

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    See also

    09/05/2011 EGYPT
    Threat of civil war looms over Egypt, an appeal to the international community
    The spokesman of the Catholic Churches of Egypt calls on the international community to intervene to prevent the rise of an Islamic regime. The army locks down the capital to prevent further clashes between Christians and Muslims. Those who foment religious hatred could be sentenced to death.

    21/03/2011 EGYPT
    Vote rigging and religious manipulation allows ‘Yes’ to win in constitutional referendum
    About 77 per cent of voters say yes to changes. The outcome has disappointed many of those who took part in the revolution. They were hoping for a more radical transformation of the constitution. Sharia remains the principal source for Egyptian law. Speaking to AsiaNews, source slams manipulation by Muslim Brotherhood.

    18/03/2012 EGYPT
    Shenouda III, Patriarch of the Copts, dies
    He was 88 years. He ruled the Coptic Church for over 40years. The condolences of the mufti and the Muslim Brotherhood. He had conflicts with Anwar Sadat, who forced him under house arrest inWadi Natroun. He was critical of Mubarak because he did not defend the Christians against attacks by extremists, but supported him until the last. For the patriarch Christians and Muslims together make up the Egyptian nation and the Christians long before the arrival of Islam.

    21/08/2013 EGYPT
    Young Muslim: We can only rebuild Egypt together with Christians
    Mohamed Elhariry, a young businessman in Cairo, reveals the on the ground reality of life in recent months in Egypt. The young man says the Muslim Brotherhood "have lied to everyone, they never wanted a democratic state. The real Egypt is multi-denominational".

    21/06/2011 EGYPT
    Egypt’s obscure law on religious buildings. Doubts of the Christian communities
    The draft stipulates that religious buildings must be at least 1 km from other existing buildings, but it does not explain whether mosques or churches. Also challenged the minimum size of 1000 square meters and regional governors management of permits.



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