10 October 2011

Persecution Watch: Egypt

Yesterday 35 Coptic Christians were killed in Cairo amid protests stemming back to the destruction of a church.  They were killed by the Egyptian military.  More than 300 others were injured.

Not only did the army open fire upon the Christians, but also ran over them with military vehicles.

Commenting at his coffee house, my friend Brian makes this observation:

Despite the lazy sectarian framing of the Reuters excerpt above, this is not sectarian violence, but violence of the regime against its citizens and an ongoing quest to use the threat of instability to preserve its own power. What's more, it has a lesson for those who argue that current regimes are good for religious minorities: Dictators make fickle friends.

The Assyrian International News Agency offers the following description of the events (CAUTION: a graphic image of the violence follows the jump):

According to witnesses, the army forces were waiting for the Copic rally to arrive at Maspero, near the state television building. "They arranged a trap for us," said Father Filopateer. "As soon as we arrived they surrounded us and started shooting live ammunition randomly at us. Then the armored vehicles arrived and ran over protesters."

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