Egypt’s Interior Ministry has issued a statement on the murder of Coptic physician (urologist), Nash’at Rizq Episkharoun, 65, from the town of Dairut in Assiut, some 350km south of Cairo, after the police caught the murderer.
The statement revealed that Dr Episkharoun was killed in his clinic after being stabbed several times with a knife. The knife was found in the entrance of the building where the doctor’s clinic is located.
Police investigations led to the murderer; 24-year-old Muhammad R.Sh. from the village of al-Sharaqwa in Dairut, who was caught in Cairo where he had fled. The police said he suffered from “mental disorder” and had frequently visited the victim’s clinic to get treatment from urinary tract diseases.
Mr Muhammad R. Sh. confessed to committing the crime, saying that he had used the medicine prescribed by Dr Episkharoun but did not improve; rather, the pain increased. So he bought the knife and killed the doctor.
The killer is being prosecuted.
Many Copts commented on social media that they did not believe the ‘mental disorder’ allegation, and saw the crime as sectarian. Dr Christina Adel, a Dairut activist, said that the crime had no sectarian overtones but was purely criminal.
“As to the suspect’s mental health condition,” she explained, “He was temporarily going through a hard time owing to his inability to have children. But this is not synonymous with mental disorder! And the police is not the authority to determine whether or not he was mentally ill.
16 October 2018