Middle East and North Africa

Muslim extremists attack Egypt churches

Coptic Christians.

A mob of almost 60 Muslim extremists, on 22 October, attacked the church of Anba Moussa (St. Moses) building in Ezbet al-Qeshri, Minya, 250km south of Cairo. The extremists unsuccessfully attempted to break in to the building, but set the main gate on fire, and break the security cameras on the gate before the police restored order. They also smashed the car of a Christian, and threw stones at the houses of Christians, causing injuries to three of them. The first floor of the building houses a pre-school nursery that serves 38 toddlers. None of the perpetrators have been caught.

The horde approached from the local mosque, screaming: “no matter what, we’ll bring the church down”, and “Islamic! Islamic!” They were protesting the presence of non-Islamic activity in the village. Ezbet al-Qeshiri is home to 1000 Christians who previously worshipped in the church of Mar-Girgis (St. George), in the nearby village of Nazlet Asmant in 2015.

Three other churches in Upper Egypt villages were also closed by the police that day: two in Minya and one in al-Hager, Sohag, 460km south of Cairo.