The following is an urgent call for help, circulated in a number of sites and posted by the prominent secularist writer Khaled Montaser in his Facebook page. Far from being unique, it highlights the struggle of a courageous Coptic young woman against attempts of forced conversion to Islam.
After the peace and salutations for yourselves: I'm Lisa Nessim Bushra Abdul Malik national ID number 2840126240261 province of Minya, Matai district, (resident) in front of the youth center.
In a move that has many forward-looking Egyptians concerned, the government recently allowed the Salafis to return to preaching in mosques and on television.
Soon after the June 2013 revolution in Egypt, which saw the ousting (and subsequent imprisonment) of the Muslim Brotherhood, Islamist groups—chief among them the Salafis—were banned from preaching. The logic was that they were the primary actors responsible for inciting the nation’s more zealous Muslims to attack the government targets, Coptic Christian churches, etc.
According to Dr. Muhammad ‘Afifi, Secretary General of the Supreme Council for Culture in Egypt, the Islamic State does not acknowledge the sovereignty of any state or their boundaries and seeks to take advantage of the tenuous situation of many Arab nations.
‘Afifi made his comments during a seminar titled “How to Confront the Islamic State in Egypt.” Among other things, he said that “There is a crisis facing states in their confrontation with radicalism, and it is imperative for us to confront it honestly because the Islamic State is threatening Egypt.
Earlier this week, Reuters confirmed what many suspected…ISIS has been coaching the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. The growth of ISIS influence in a country already struggling to contain terrorist activities is especially worrisome for Copts and other religious minorities who have already born the brunt of Muslim Brotherhood aggression after the sit-in in Rabba was dismantled by the Egyptian government.
World leaders and international media have rightly expressed outrage over the heinous acts against Yazidi, Christian, and Shia minorities in Iraq and Syria. Yet the carnage against Egypt’s Copts, who represent the largest Christian minority in the Middle East, was in and out of the news in just a short period of time.
A Coptic Christian priest in Egypt is appealing to President Sisi to intervene on behalf of a Coptic church being threatened by “religious extremists.”
Four years ago the Coptic Church of St Abram in Shubra al-Khaima received a permit to build an additional services building. However, for four years, seven “thugs”—in the words of the report—have been preventing the church from building the services building, including by mobilizing the areas Muslims to demonstrate against, and threaten, the church—despite the fact that the church acquired the necessary papers.
Coptic Solidarity is a U.S. public charity organization under section 501 (C) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions are deductible under Section 170 of the Code.
Coptic Solidarity 2014 Conference
The Annual Conference was held in Washington, D.C. on June 26-28, 2014.