In News & Reports

By Hazel Torres – Christian Today

They’re like sheep surrounded by rapacious wolves.

Dozens of Christian workers are trapped in Libya with all roads leading to the safety of their Egyptian homeland blocked by vicious militants from the Islamic State (ISIS), which has vowed to kill them all, The Christian Post reported.

The persecution watchdog group International Christian Concern (ICC) sounded the alarm after getting information that more than 30 Coptic Christian workers from Egypt have found themselves unable to return home as they have been surrounded by ISIS militants. These workers had traveled to Libya for work to support their families but are now desperately trying to escape and find a safe passage home.


An ISIS video released in February 2015 shows 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians at a beach in Libya moments before they were beheaded. Reuters

An Egyptian Christian resident told ICC that the workers are trapped in the Libyan town of Misrata, Libya. He appealed to Egyptian authorities “to intervene and find safe ways to return these men to their homes.”

The ICC managed to get in touch by phone to one of the trapped Egyptian Christian workers. He said he is with a group of Christians living in a housing building in Misrata, Libya. “We hope to return home to Egypt, but there isn’t any safe way,” he said.

The ICC noted that the highway that the workers used to enter Libya from Egypt goes through the Libyan city of Sirte “where extremists are known to stop buses and check IDs for Christian names.”

There is another route that would take them to the Libyan capital Tripoli en route to Egypt, but the road going there is also controlled by ISIS, the persecution watchdog group said.

ISIS has declared that it would continue killing Christians wherever they are, including those who protect them. Less than two years ago, ISIS militants beheaded 21 Coptic Christians kidnapped in Libya. The terrorist group even released a video of their gruesome act in what is now considered as one of the biggest mass executions of Christians filmed on camera.

But despite the danger of being captured and beheaded by ISIS militants in Libya, some Christian workers from Egypt are forced to go there for lack of job opportunities in their home country. These Christians face marginalisation and discrimination in Egypt where they are forced to compete for even the most basic of jobs and where their children are kicked out of school, according to ICC.

“Because of this, they’re left with no alternative but to face radical Islamic terror in Libya in order to provide food for their children,” the group said.


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