Egypt’s Cabinet has today approved the legalision of the status of 120 unlicensed churches and church-affiliated buildings mostly used as community centres. This is the third batch of legalisations to be approved by the Cabinet since it began work, through an affiliated committee, on the task of legalising unlicensed churches in September 2017. The last 120 approvals bring up the total number of legalisations approved to 340 out of a total 3730 applications submitted to the Cabinet.
The Cabinet meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli.
The legalisation decisions are subject to the structural soundness of the buildings as proved by a committee from the building authority, as well as to compliance with civil protection regulations and payment of the required legalisation fees.
Until the Law for Building and Restoring Churches was passed in Egypt in September 2016, it was next to impossible for Copts to obtain official licence to build or restore a church. Copts, who direly needed churches in view of the growing congregation and the declining conditions of existing churches, thus resorted to circumventing the law and building churches without licence. The 2016 law includes provisions for legalising unlicensed churches and church-affiliated buildings.
13 October 2018