Two American Delegations in Egypt to Discuss ‘Security Issues’
By Daily News Egypt

Egypt’s Defence Minister Sedki Sobhi (R) met on Tuesday with a delegation of American military veterans and
strategic analysts
(Photo from ourtesy of the military spokesman)

Two different American delegations have arrived in Egypt according to Mofid Deak, the US embassy press attaché and official spokesman, to discuss security and transitional issues and meet with presidential hopeful Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi.

Salafists, and the Ultimate Source of Islamic Hate for Infidels
By Raymond Ibrahim

Who is ultimately responsible for the ongoing attacks on Christians and their churches throughout the Islamic world?

Focusing on one of the most obvious nations where Christians are regularly targeted--Egypt's Coptic Christians--one finds that the "mob" is the most visible and obvious culprit. One Copt accused of some transgression against Muslim sensibilities--from having relations with a Muslim woman, to ruining a Muslim man's shirt--is often enough to prompt Muslim mobs to destroy entire Christian villages and their churches.

EU, Egypt Agree to Elections Observation Mission
By H.A. Hellyer

The agreement for the EU to monitor Egypt’s coming elections will add to their legitimacy, but not everyone agrees the move is wise.

On April 13, the European Union delegation to Egypt and the head of Egypt's electoral commission signed an agreement to expedite setting up a complete Elections Observation Mission. Preceded by a somewhat unexpected trip by the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton, the agreement has one predictable aim: to observe the imminent presidential elections, the first round of which is due to take place May 26-27.

Syrian Army Seizes ancient Christian Town of Maaloula
By Reuters

Syrian soldiers backed by Hezbollah fighters recaptured the town of Maaloula, north of Damascus, on Monday, military sources and state television said, further squeezing rebels' supply routes through the Qalamoun mountains into Lebanon.

Islamist fighters, some from the al Qaeda-linked Nusra Front, had taken over part of the ancient Christian town in December and held several nuns captive until releasing them in March in a prisoner exchange deal.

Christians Killed in Egypt Reflect Growing Hatred in Segments of Society
By Morning Star News

A Coptic Christian teacher in Egypt allegedly shot by the teenage brother of one of his students has died, human rights activists said Friday.

Ashraf Alahm Atef Hanna, an English teacher at Marzouk Prep School in the village of Marzouk in Minya Province, succumbed to injuries from the shooting on Tuesday (April 8). He was 35.


Under Threat: The Worsening Plight of Egypt’s Coptic Christians

Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission (TLHRC)

Hearing:

Under Threat: The Worsening Plight of Egypt’s Coptic Christians

Wednesday, December 7, 2011 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. 334 Cannon HOB

Please join the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission for a hearing on threats to religious freedom in Egypt, including, the worsening plight of Egypt’s Coptic Christians.  At a time when the world’s attention is on Egypt as it undergoes historic but tumultuous political change, it is important that the U.S. continue to shine the spotlight on the difficulties confronting religious minorities in the country.  Egypt is on the cusp of a new era but the transition to a democratic society means more than just holding elections.  It means that basic freedoms—such as the freedom of religion— are protected.

The Coptic Christian community, which traces its origins back 2,000 years and is the largest religious minority in Egypt today, is under assault.  Churches have been bombed and citizens have been attacked while the Egyptian government seemingly encourages a culture of impunity for those responsible for these acts of violence.  This hearing will address the continued discrimination and physical threats to the Coptic community and consider how the United States can better support religious freedom.

We will hear from the following witnesses: ***

Panel 1:

Kathy Fitzpatrick, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, U.S. Department of State

Panel 2:

Nina Shea – Director, Center for Religious Freedom, Hudson Institute

Dina Guirguis – Egyptian American democracy activist, attorney, and member, Egyptian American Rule of Law Association

Panel 3:

Adel Guindy - President, Coptic Solidarity International

Cynthia Farahat – Egyptian political activist, writer and researcher

Raymond Ibrahim – Middle East specialist and Associate fellow, Middle East Forum

***Witness list subject to change.

If you have any questions, please contact Kalinda Stephenson (Rep. Wolf) at 202-225-5136 or Mike McVicker (Rep. McGovern) at 202-225-3599.

Frank R. Wolf                             James P. McGovern Member of Congress                  Member of Congress

Co-Chair, TLHRC                        Co-Chair, TLHRC

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