Minya Copts attacked by Islamist Mursi-supporters

02-08-2013 05:05 PM

Soliman Shafiq-Tereza Hanna

In Minya, Upper Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood circulated fliers after the Friday noon prayers threatening to attack police stations,

 public facilities, and churches should the police break the five-week long sit-ins by Mursi supporters at the eastern Cairo Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque and at the Nahda Square in Giza.
This coincided with resumed attacks by the Islamist supporters of the ousted president Muhammad Mursi against the Copts in the village of Dalaga in Minya. Last evening, following Taraweeh prayers—evening prayers held during the holy Muslim month of Ramadan following the sunset meal which breaks the fast—the Islamists held a rally that toured the village shouting pro-Mursi slogans. They threw stones at the houses of Copts and at the village churches; and they banged aggressively with sticks and clubs at the doors of the Copts. They sprayed graffiti that insulted the Copts and Church leaders, and called for killing them and burning down their houses and churches. 
This is not the first time the Copts of Dalaga are targeted; earlier this month similar attacks occurred against their homes and the Coptic Orthodox and Protestant churches there. A guest house owned by the Coptic Catholic church in the village was burned, but the priest who resides there, Fr Ayoub, was rescued by the neighbours. And last week two other churches in the Minya village of Matai were also attacked by the Islamists.
In another Minya village, Nazlet Ebeid, which includes a Coptic-majority population whose main activity is working the nearby quarries, the Islamists attacked the Copts as they went to their work. Naguib Gamal Farag, Mary Nageh Zaky, and Abra’am Magdy filed claims to the prosecution that they were pelted with stones, and beaten with sticks and clubs by the Islamists as they went home. The result was that six were injured and four cars damaged. 
Eye witnesses say that the Islamist attacks have forced some 400 plants that produce white bricks in Nazlet Ebeid to close.
Watani International
2 August 2013
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