Crisis in Egypt for Egyptian Christians


The situation in Egypt is volatile and changing. Tens of thousands march to face off against security forces. We bring you the latest from the ground and also discuss the plight of Egyptian Christians who are concerned the latest political turmoil could result in a terrible backlash for their community. *UPDATED *

Egypt remains volatile and changing ...

Egypt is bleeding once again. There are casualties as tens of thousands of pro -Morsi supporters are filling the streets of Cairo and other Egyptian cities in protest against the military's crackdown earlier this week. Gunfire can be heard. Tear gas being fired.

For the latest on the changing situation, we reached:

  • Jake Lippincott is a freelance journalist in Cairo. He is right by the banks of the nile and has been witnessing clashes on bridges near by. He says there are numerous wounded by rocks and knives. Rocks, known as "white weapons" remain the most common weapon but adds that all sides are well armed.

  • Alla Ibrahim Mostafa is a spokeswoman for the Freedom and Justice Party, the party of former President Mohammed Morsi. She is involved in the protests in Cairo this morning.

The violence ripping through Egypt today has not been confined to the battle between Morsi supporters and the police. Egypt's Christian communities have been targeted with increasing frequency since the military pushed former President Mohammed Morsi out of power last month.And since the crackdown on pro-Morsi protesters began this week--the attacks on Christian institutions have come fast and furious.

It should be noted that neither the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood nor its political wing the Freedom and Justice Party promote violence against Christians. Yet it hasn't stopped some of their supporters from carrying out attacks.

  • Amir Beshay is an Egyptian Christian living in Cairo and he has been documenting attacks against churches in Egypt. He feels there is more to the anti Coptic violence than religious sectarianism because he thinks the Muslim Brotherhood uses the attacks as a political tool as well.

Canada's Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird and Andrew Bennett, Canada's Ambassador for Religious Freedom are also concerned about attacks on Egypt's Christians. Yesterday, they issued a statement, saying in part:

"We are concerned by recent attacks on religious institutions in Egypt, in particular the unconscionable attacks on Coptic Orthodox, and Anglican churches, and on Baptist and Franciscan institutions.

Attacks on places of worship are unacceptable. Canada calls on Egyptian authorities to protect worshippers and religious sites from violence and intimidation."

This segment was produced by The Current's Catherine Kalbflesich, Geoff Turner and Leif Zapf-Gijle.

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