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Did Someone Say ‘Conquest’?: Turkey’s Ottoman Obsession
By Burak Bekdil -
Hürriyet Daily News

Turkey’s terrible miscalculation in Syria has pushed its foreign policy rhetoric from "shallow arrogance" to "defensive bewilderment." Over the past five years, Ankara has claimed that "Syria, Palestine and Egypt [and other former Ottoman territories] are Turkey's domestic affairs."

 

Egypt’s NGO Laws Continue to Threaten Civil Society
By Ahmed Naje – TIMEP

In a paid advertisement published in Al-Ahram newspaper in September 2014, the Egyptian Ministry of Social Solidarity extended the deadline for NGOs to register with the government. This announcement extended the existing deadline by 45 days to mid-November; a July 2014 announcement had indicated that all NGOs must be registered with the government by September otherwise they will be subject to prosecution.

 

Humiliation Replaces Fear for the Women Kidnapped by IS 

By Annabell Van den Berghe -The Guardian

Widow with child sold for marriage after raiding Isis militants shot her husband and took them into captivity

 

Human Rights Watch believes hundreds of women, many of them Yazidi, are being sold into forced marriages by IS: video

 

ISIS Fighters ‘Crucify’ 17-Year-Old Boy in Syria
By Heather Saul -The Independent

Isis fighters have reportedly executed a 17-year-old boy and left his body on display on a cross in Syria.

 

Pictures being shared online show a banner attached to the teenager's chest saying the boy has been crucified for taking photos of Isis military bases, as well as receiving "500 Turkish lira" for any footage taken.

 

‘Advice and Guidance’ Sessions in Religious Conversion Should Rsume; but Remain Painkiller, Not Treatment
By Youssef Sidhom - Watani

The recent incident of the Gabal al-Teir Coptic woman who went missing for 25 days and was declared by the security officials to have converted to Islam has raised several alarming questions. The 40-year-old mother of five is now back home with her family and insists she never converted but, as I wrote last week, this does not mean the curtain has been drawn on the incident.

 

A non-biased investigation is needed into the brutal police response to the wrathful protest of the Coptic villagers against police failure—rather, inaction—to find the missing woman and bring her home.

 


USCIRF Condemns Bombing of Church in Egypt and Urges Increased Security During and After Coptic

WASHINGTON, D.C. - On New Year’s Day, a suicide bomber attacked a Coptic Orthodox
Church in Alexandria, Egypt, killing at least 21 and wounding scores more. Reports indicate that
20 people have been detained for questioning, but it is unclear whether they were directly
connected to the violence.

 

“The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) condemns in the
strongest possible terms the bombing and targeting of Christians and their places of worship,”
said Leonard Leo, USCIRF chair. “This attack all too clearly demonstrates the ongoing problem
of unchecked violence against Christians in Egypt. The Commission regrets all loss of life and
calls for a thorough investigation to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to justice,
something that has been elusive in Egypt in previous attacks on religious minorities. The
Egyptian government must also take visible steps to ensure the protection of Coptic places of
worship before, during, and after the Coptic Christmas of January 7.”

 


Serious problems of discrimination, intolerance, and other human rights violations against
members of religious minorities, as well as disfavored Muslims, remain widespread in Egypt. In
USCIRF’s 2010 Annual Report, the Commission noted that the reporting period marked a
significant upsurge in violence targeting Coptic Orthodox Christians. The Egyptian government
has not taken sufficient steps to halt the repression of and discrimination against Christians and
other religious believers, or, in many cases, to punish those responsible for violence or other
severe violations of religious freedom.


“Sadly, due to violent attacks, Christmas was not a time of peace for Christians in many
countries around the world, including Egypt,” said Leo. “At present, there is no real deterrent for
those who target Egyptian citizens because of their religious identity. Until there is justice and
accountability, the Christian minority, and other minorities in Egypt, will remain vulnerable to
extremists and terrorists.”


The Alexandria attack is just one in a series of attacks on Christians in Egypt. In January of
last year, six Christians and a Muslim guard were killed in a drive-by shooting on Coptic
Christmas Eve in the southern Egyptian town of Naga Hammadi. To date, no one has been
brought to justice. Closing arguments concluded in the trial of the three alleged perpetrators
last month and a final verdict is expected on January 16.


“The Commission welcomed President Obama’s statement on the attack and his call that the
Egyptian government bring the attackers ‘to justice for this barbaric and heinous act,’” said Leo.
“We hope the U.S. government will vigorously follow up on the President’s words and press
Cairo to see that all involved are held to account. The reports of ongoing violence connected to
other demonstrations require vigorous government action to protect not only places of worship
but also members of the Christian minority, as a means of preventing a cycle of reprisals.”

U.S. federal government commission. USCIRF
Commissioners are appointed by the President and the leadership of both political parties in the
Senate and the House of Representatives. USCIRF’s principal responsibilities are to review the
facts and circumstances of violations of religious freedom internationally and to make policy
recommendations to the President, the Secretary of State, and Congress.
To interview a USCIRF Commissioner, contact Tom Carter, Communications Director at
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , or (202) 523-3257.

 

 

 

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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.

 

 

Fifth Annual Conference

Coptic Solidarity 2014 Conference

The Annual Conference was held in Washington, D.C. on June 26-28, 2014.

 Click here for details 

 

Press Releases

Reports & Resources

CS Writing Contest

Marina Shalaby, a researcher at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, is declared the winner of the Coptic Solidarity Writing Contest for 2014.(Click Here)

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