Persecution of Copts Addressed at Congressional Hearing

Kristin Wright | Open Doors USA | Updated: Dec 12, 2013

Persecution of Copts Addressed at Congressional Hearing

On Tuesday a joint hearing before the Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations and Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa shone a spotlight on the situation of Coptic Christians in Egypt.

“They [Copts] alone were set as scapegoats and erroneously blamed and accused of instigating or contributing to the violent dispersal of pro-Morsi demonstrators,” Bishop Angaelos said on Tuesday, describing the increasing frequency of attacks on the Coptic minority in the wake of Morsi’s removal from office.

“Carried out by radical elements in society, these attacks are not merely on individuals but on the Christian and minority presence in its entirety,” he added.

In one of the worst attacks against Christians in Egypt, more than 200 churches were attacked in August, leaving at least 7 Christians dead. On October 4 Copts were killed, including two sisters aged 8 and 12, when gunmen opened fire on a wedding ceremony.

Samuel Tadros, a research fellow at Hudson Institute's Center for Religious Freedom, spoke about the ongoing risks faced by Christians in Egypt.

“No matter who rules Egypt, the twin phenomenon of the growing hatred of Christians and the willingness of their neighbors to attacks them, and the failure of Egyptian governments to protect them and stop the attacks have become the hallmarks of the Copt's continued plight,” he said.

Persecution of Copts Addressed at Congressional Hearing