CAIRO: A recent report from Human Rights Watch reveals staggering figure of 37 Churches either burnt or looted during ongoing violence in Egypt.
This fresh report from the Human Rights Watch has revealed the limit of the bloodshed and hostility against Egypt’s Coptic Christians. According to report,” Since 14th of August, 37 Churches have been either destroyed or badly damaged, and at least five others were attacked, leaving at least four people dead. In addition, scores of Christian businesses and schools have been looted, vandalized and torched.”
Joe Stork, the acting Human Rights Watch Middle East Director says,” But the egregiousness nature of these actions is only matched by the lack of response by Egyptian authorities themselves.”
Since the Egyptian military removed Morsi from power; Coptic Christians have suffered sabotage, destruction and massacre with seldom little or else no police protection and help.
“For weeks, everyone could see these attacks coming, with Muslim Brotherhood members accusing Coptic Christians of a role in Mohammad Morsi’s ouster, but the authorities did little or nothing to prevent them. Now dozens of Churches are smouldering ruins, and Christians throughout the country are hiding in their homes, afraid for their very lives,” said Joe Stork in a statement.
Tamara Alrifai, the Human Rights Watch Advocacy and Communications Director for the Middle East and North Africa Division, pin pointed that prior to last week’s conflict between the military and pro-Morsi followers, “there were already signs that the Copts would be targeted.”
“Over the past few weeks there has been an incitement discourse against Christians from political leadership and there have not been enough measures taken by police and security,” Alfirai said.
“The attacks seemed inevitable. The government is responsible for protecting its own population when the signs are clear,” he continued.
Unpredictably in several occurrences, belligerence from the Copts’ aggressors was manifest; in the city of Minya, residents told Human Rights Watch that,” Coptic-owned storefronts had been marked with a black “X” and they were subsequently targeted for attack.”