Monday, 10 October 2011

24 Dead as Coptic Christians Protest

Coptic Christians Protest

Reports like this always leave me feeling shocked. Is it really possible that this can still be happening in the 21st Century? Read the story for yourself at source here or read it below.

Coptic Christian protesters clashed with security forces in Cairo yesterday, in a night that left at least 24 people dead and more than 200 injured as shooting broke out and cars were set on fire, according to news reports.

Several hundred Egyptian Christians protesting a recent attack on a church came under assault by people in plain clothes who fired pellets at them and pelted them with stones, according to the Associated Press. Some protesters may have snatched weapons from soldiers and turned them on the military, in addition to throwing rocks and bottles, the AP reported.

The death toll from the violence was at least 24, the AP reported, citing a health ministry official. Egypt’s military deployed more than 1,000 security forces and armored vehicles along the Nile where clashes began, AP said. Protests continued late into the night with the military imposing a curfew until 7 a.m. local time in central Cairo, Agence France-Presse reported.

Prime Minister Essam Sharaf said in a televised speech that the clashes were “unjustified violence” that “raised fear and concerns about the future of this homeland” and the country’s transition to democracy.

Protesters set military vehicles on fire as soldiers fired into the air to disperse the Coptic Christians, who were protesting the demolition of a church in Aswan, Egypt, last week, Al Jazeera reported. The church in southern Egypt was demolished Oct. 1, according to Shorouk News, the website of the Egyptian newspaper El-Shorouk.

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