Published: Sun, April 16, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Egypt Coptic Church cuts back Easter celebrations after attacks

Around 44 people were killed in Egypt after explosions occurred at the Cathedral of the Coptic Pope and another Christian Church on Sunday.

However, the ministry did not mention if this group belongs to the Islamic State (IS) group which claimed responsibility on Sunday for the bombings of two churches.

In Egypt, three Muslim female police officers - Nagwa El-Haggar, Asmaa Hussein and Omneya Roshdy - are being hailed as heroes for attempting to save the lives of Coptic Christians targeted in two attacks that took place on Palm Sunday.

A Coptic Church in Cairo, Egypt. A suicide bomber detonated himself at the altar of the church, which resulted in 27 deaths and 78 injuries.

Egyptian officials denounced the violence as an attempt to sow divisions, and Francis sent his "deep condolences" to Tawadros.

The interior ministry identified the attacker has been identified as 40-year-old Mamdouh Amin Mohamed Baghdady, who lived in the upper Egyptian City of Qena.

In Tanta a man wearing concealed explosives passed through a security check at St. George's Church before detonating his suicide bomb near the pews at the front.

Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, published a recent Op-Ed on the developing relationship between United States President Donald Trump and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

In response to the attacks, the President has declared a state of emergency for three months.

The interior ministry on Wednesday offered a £100,000 (RM552,125) reward for information leading to the arrest of 18 suspects it said were members of jihadist cells linked to the the church attacks.

President El-Sisi, who has promised to protect religious minorities being persecuted by extremists, praised the actions of the security forces while accusing jihadis of dividing Egypt by attacking minorities.

Islamic State has waged a low-level war against soldiers and police in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula for years but it is increasingly targeting Christians and broadening its reach into Egypt's mainland.

Speaking in an interview with Aid to the Church in Need, the Catholic charity for persecuted and other suffering Christians, Bishop William said that until now "our sense of security was not very strong".

Egypt has seen a spate of attacks since 2013, when the army deposed Morsi, the country's first democratically elected leader, following mass protests against his divisive rule.

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