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28 Coptic Christians Murdered on Bus in Egypt
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Photo courtesy of The Daily Mail.

Summary: Ten gunmen attacked a bus of Christians heading to prayer in Egypt.

On Friday, gunmen stormed a bus carrying Coptic Christians, and after opening fire, they killed at least 28 people and wounded 25, officials told the BBC. The bus was headed to the Monastery of St. Samuel the Confessor so that its passengers could pray.

  
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“The gunmen got on the bus and they shot people point-blank,” Bishop Makarios of the Coptic Orthodox Church in Minya Province said to PBS.

While no group has come forward yet to claim the attack, the BBC said that ISIS militants have targeted Coptic Christians (Copts) multiple times in the past few months and vowed to strike again.

In Egypt, there are approximately nine million members of the Coptic Orthodox Church, and the Copts make up ten percent of Egypt’s population, which is 92 million. After ISIS members attacked the group last month, Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi declared a nationwide state of emergency and vowed to confront the jihadist military group. However, sources told the BBC that many Copts complain that authorities are not doing enough to protect them.

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After Friday’s attack, President el-Sissi said that Egypt’s military fought back against the attackers, Fox News reported. The president said that the military struck bases in Libya where the attackers had trained and the country has vowed to attack any other place where terrorists train, no matter where those locations are in the world.

In a televised speech, President el-Sissi asked United States President Donald Trump to continue his commitment to fighting global terrorism.



“I direct my appeal to President Trump: I trust you, your word and your ability to make fighting global terror your primary task,” el-Sissi said.

Trump has already condemned the attack, blaming “thuggish ideology.”

Witnesses said that 10 attackers in three SUVs attacked the bus while wearing military uniforms and wearing masks. They reportedly demanded the Christian passengers recite the Muslim profession of faith before they opened fire.

Survivors said that the murderers left behind Ramadan flyers, and local media said that the killers had recorded video of themselves during the slaughter.

Christians in Muslim-majority Egypt have faced discrimination and threats of terror from ISIS for quite some time. And in April, the terrorist group claimed responsibility for twin suicide bombings on Palm Sunday and for attacking a church in December.

In February, an ISIS-affiliate released a video where they said Egyptian Christians were their “favorite prey,” according to Fox News.

Many international groups such as the United Nations have condemned Friday’s attack, and last month, the Pope visited Egypt to show his support towards the Christian minority. Following the visit, ISIS vowed to up their attacks on Christians in the country, according to The Daily Mail.

What do you think of this tragedy? Let us know in the comments below.



 

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