A suspected ISIS militant stabbed a Coptic Christian priest to death on Thursday, October 12. The incident unfolded in suburb of El–Marg. A gruesome video of the stabbing was posted online by the militants. In keeping an with Egyptian newspaper, victim has been identified Samaan Shehta.
A “young unemployed man” attacked the priest in front of his vehicle. The attacker later hit the priest in the head with an axe and the assailant fled. “It is believed that it is a hate crime that has been executed by an extremist affiliated to IS or Salafism,” an Egyptian journalist said.
The video sowed people attempting to help the wounded priest who was lying on the ground. At the time of assault there was another priest with Shehta, the other priest has been identified as Benjamin Moftah. The attackers also assaulted Benjamin Moftah, however little is known about his condition.
After the incident, Bishop Anba Angaelos-General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the U.K. condemned the incident saying, “Another day in Egypt with another Coptic Christian murdered.” He said that Shehta was in Cairo for the purpose of collecting humanitarian aid for the needy in his parish, but was “brutally killed” by the suspected ISIS member.
“This incident makes us once again ask so many questions. Why should a priest not be able to walk safely down a street, especially a suburban street in Cairo? Why should he be chased by a man brandishing a deadly weapon and have no one run to his aid; in actual fact, everyone was running away,” a statement from Bishop Anba Angaelos said.
He also raised question on the fact that the ambulance arrived after more than an hour, he said that the police did little to secure the forensic evidence from the crime scene. “After the initial shock and the immense sadness, today is a day that brings anger and I am not apologetic for that anger.
I would be just as angry if this was any other person being dealt with in this way, in any other part of Egypt or indeed any other part of the world. Yet he is a Christian, a Coptic Christian, and a Coptic priest, which makes it all the more close and all the more painful,” Angaelos continued.