Christians Call for Justice Following Church Attack in Egypt
Religion TodayReligious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
- 2013 Feb 20
Christians gathered in Cairo on Sunday to protest the destruction of a church that was attacked by Muslim villagers over the weekend in Egypt's Fayoum province -- the second attack on Christians in the province in a little over a month, International Christian Concern reports. Twenty to 30 Muslims, most from an extended family, attacked Mar Girgis church in the village of Tamiyyah following a 3 p.m. service on Friday. The villagers pelted the church and four worshippers with stones, tore down the cross erected on top of the building, and threw Molotov cocktail-type explosives at the structure with the intent of setting it on fire. Following the attack, local authorities conducted a "reconciliation" meeting between Christians and Muslims in the village to resolve the dispute, which the church viewed as "unfair and humiliating," according to the Assyrian International News Agency. About a hundred Christian protesters rallied in the Shubra district of Cairo on Feb. 17, demanding that the church be rebuilt and that those responsible be brought to justice. In addition, Christians called for an end to "reconciliation" meetings, a traditional form of "conflict resolution" arranged by Egyptian authorities to ease tension between Muslims and Christians following anti-Christian violence. The sessions are often held to bypass the judicial system and victims are at times compelled to abandon their claims to a legal remedy.