Death of a Coptic priest, stabbed in the street in Egypt

“While many details of the incident remain unclear, it highlights the vulnerability that many Egyptian Christians face, especially during the religious holidays of Ramadan and Easter. »

Friday, in Alexandria, Egypt, the Coptic priest of the church of Adra was murdered in the middle of the street by an "old man" armed with a knife. He died while being picked up to be taken to hospital.

Le Ministry of the Interior said in a statement on Friday, that he "was arrested for assaulting a Christian cleric while he was walking on the corniche of Alexandria" and clarified that "legal action has been taken".

For Jeff King, President ofInternational Christian Concern, “although many details of the incident remain unclear, it highlights the vulnerability that many Egyptian Christians face, especially during the religious holidays of Ramadan and Easter.”

“It is normal that Christians face increased persecution during these seasons, and such an incident could inspire further acts of extremism. Unfortunately, in the Egyptian context, it is common for the perpetrator to be accused of having a mental illness rather than addressing underlying extremist motivations. This trend is not only a disservice to genuine religious freedom, but also increases the marginalization of those with genuine disabilities. »

Reacting to the killing, Ishak Ibrahim, a journalist and researcher at the Egyptian Initiative for Human Rights, lamented on Facebook that "the roots of discrimination and extremism still exist and are hidden."

“Despite the decline in sectarian tensions and attacks in recent years…the roots of discrimination and extremism still exist and are hidden, waiting for an opportunity to reveal themselves. »

Le Sheikh Ahmad al-Tayyeb, who heads Al-Azhar in Egypt, the highest institution of Sunni Islam in the Muslim world, condemned the attack on this priest. For him, such acts “could trigger religious wars”. He added that "homicide is a major sin which incurs the wrath of God and is punishable in the hereafter".

MC

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