The police today caught a young man for attacking Coptic women on the streets of the Cairo middle class district of Shubra. Shubra is famous for its high Coptic population and, given that Coptic women are easily identifiable because they do not don the Islamic ++hijab++ veil but wear their hair uncovered, it was easy for the attacker to pick his victims.
It is not known how many women the man had attacked; only two reported the attacks to the police yesterday. But social media had a day or two earlier been full of posts by bloggers from Shubra informing of a dark man in a red Jeep car who stabs Coptic women in different parts of their bodies using a cutter then flees. He had chased a Coptic woman, 58-year-old Mervat Farid, who tried to make it to her home, but no sooner had she reached the entrance of the building than he overtook her, held her by the neck, and hit her on the head with a bottle. She managed to scream however, so he fled as the neighbours rushed to her rescue. They carried her to the nearest hospital where she was given First Aid, after which she headed to the police station and reported the incident.
On social media, women were warned against being alone or lingering on the street. The posts aroused terror among Shubra residents, especially since the attacks were inexplicable; not once had there been any theft.
It took less than 24 hours for the police to identify the attacker through CCTV cameras, and track the red Jeep. It turned out that the attacker did not own the Jeep, but it was only in his possession. He confessed his crimes, saying he had been under the influence of alcohol. The police found the cutter in the car. They arrested the young man who is now detained pending investigation.
This is not the first time Coptic women are attacked on the street. Two months ago, in the Giza district of Saqiat Mekki, there were reports to the police of a man who attacked Coptic women with a cutter in sensitive parts of their bodies. The police caught the culprit, but he was declared mentally unbalanced.
2 July 2018