News / Africa

Egyptian Christians Mourn Protesters Killed in Cairo Clashes

An Egyptian Christian woman mourns on the coffin of Coptic Christian Mina Demian, who was killed during clashes with soldiers and riot police late Sunday, at the morgue of the Coptic Hospital in Cairo October 10, 2011.
An Egyptian Christian woman mourns on the coffin of Coptic Christian Mina Demian, who was killed during clashes with soldiers and riot police late Sunday, at the morgue of the Coptic Hospital in Cairo October 10, 2011.

Thousands of Egyptian Coptic Christians have attended a mass funeral for Christian protesters killed in street battles with security forces in Cairo, while the country's ruling military council ordered the government to investigate the violence.

Mourners packed Cairo's Abbasiya cathedral for Monday's service, led by Orthodox Coptic Pope Shenouda, who called on Christians to begin three days of fasting in the hope that peace will return.

The Coptic Church issued a statement saying the minority community has suffered repeated problems and the perpetrators have gone unpunished.

At least 25 people were killed in Sunday's battles - mostly Coptic Christians - in the country's worst violence since a February uprising that ousted longtime president Hosni Mubarak. The clashes began after more than 1,000 Christians marched to Egypt's state television building in Cairo to protest a recent attack by Islamist radicals on a church in the country's south.

The protest turned violent, with demonstrators fighting police and soldiers guarding the building. Witnesses say armored vehicles rammed into protesters, killing several of them. Some people also threw rocks and gasoline bombs at security personnel. Christian protesters accused agitators of joining in to provoke violence.

Many of the dead had gunshot wounds. At least three soldiers were among those killed. Hundreds of other people were wounded.

After a crisis meeting Monday, the generals, who took power from Mr. Mubarak, reiterated a pledge to hand power eventually to an elected civilian authority.

More violence erupted Monday outside a Cairo hospital where many of the wounded were taken for treatment, with hundreds of protesters throwing stones at security forces. Inside, Coptic women mourned dead family members.

White House officials said U.S. President Barack Obama is deeply concerned about the loss of life and called for restraint on all sides. European Union foreign ministers, meeting in Luxembourg Monday, also expressed alarm.  U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon issued a statement saying he is deeply saddened by the violence.

Christians make up about 10 percent of Egypt's roughly 80 million people. Many Christians complain that Egypt's new leadership has been too lenient on Islamists they blame for a series of anti-Christian attacks since the Mubarak ouster.

In a nationally televised address late Sunday, Egyptian Prime Minister Essam Sharaf said the violence has taken the country backward, instead of advancing towards a modern state based on democratic principles.

Egyptian authorities said they have arrested dozens of people for involvement in the unrest.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Video Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid