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Coptic Canadians protest against persecution of their coreligionists in Egypt


Ottawa, Canada -- Coptic Christians and their supporters will demonstrate on Parliament Hill at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 5, 2008 against the Egyptian government for continuing to allow criminal elements to wage regular attacks on Egyptian Copts and their properties.


Buses carrying demonstrators from Montreal and Toronto will join with Ottawa Copts for the peaceful demonstration organized by the Canadian Coptic Association. From Parliament Hill, the demonstrators will march at 2:00 p.m. to the Egyptian Embassy at 454 Laurier Avenue East to continue their protest.


Copts all over the world are outraged by the recent barbaric machine-gun attack on the monastery of Abu Fana in Upper Egypt. Some monks were kidnapped, asked to confess Islam and insult the Cross, and were brutally tortured. They were released 12 hours later with broken bones and other injuries; later the monks were refused treatment in the government hospital. The damage to the monastery and its church was estimated at 1 million pounds.


Six other incidents occurred in a two-week period, from killing four Copts in a jeweler's shop in Cairo by shooting from a passing motorcycle, to robbing another jeweler's shop owned by a Copt in Alexandria at knife point.


In a mysterious car accident with a bus carrying 30 Copts in Beni-Sweif, 12 young people were killed. The monastery of Archangel Michael in Dar El-Salam, Suhag was set on fire. Christian homes and businesses were attacked in Fayoum, and St. Mary's ancient church in Sakha, Kafr El-Sheikh was torched.


The Coptic Christian church is the world's oldest church, founded by St Mark, who wrote the Gospel of Mark, between A.D, 42 and A.D 62. Based in Alexandria, the church has an estimated 15 million members around the world, including 50 thousands in Canada.




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