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Victim of the violence-mob

Human rights defenders draw a negative balance to the situation of Copts in Egypt. 

By Michael Leh

October 24, 2018 
1:10 pm

Christmas Mass in New Cathedral near Cairo

 

When Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi visited the Christmas Mass in Cairo's Nativity Cathedral in Cairo, he made himself affable to the faithful. Whether the situation of the Copts has really improved, wants the Human Rights Committee of the Bundestag at ... Photo: dpa 

When Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi visited the Christmas Mass in Cairo's Nativity Cathedral in Cairo ... Photo: dpa

The Human Rights Committee of the Bundestag travels to Egypt in November. Before that, the Bundestag Committee on Economic Cooperation and Development in Cairo will look at the situation on the Nile. It will also be about the distress and hardships that the Christian Copts in Egypt are exposed to. Against this background, the International Society for Human Rights (IGFM) together with the "Evangelical Alliance" now informed in Berlin about the situation of the Copts. She also invited experts: the chairwoman of the Human Rights Committee of the Bundestag, the FDP member Gyde Jensen, as well as the president of the "European Union of Coptic human rights organizations" from Switzerland, Medhat Klada. 

The Human Rights Committee will meet with representatives of the Copts and other religious communities, Jensen explained. She is already in close exchange with the Egyptian ambassador about the visit. "The Chancellor," she explained, "praises the way President al-Sisi deals with the Copts. But I have also heard that this is quite different on the ground ". "That's why," she added, "the committee travels to Egypt to get first-hand information." She would "very much like to visit prisons". Even if she is aware that one does not get an "actual impression" of the conditions of detention. The plan is to meet with human rights defenders, including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government. She is already in close exchange with the Egyptian ambassador about the visit. "The Chancellor," she explained, "praises the way President al-Sisi deals with the Copts. But I have also heard that this is quite different on the ground ". "That's why," she added, "the committee travels to Egypt to get first-hand information." She would "very much like to visit prisons". Even if she is aware that one does not get an "actual impression" of the conditions of detention. The plan is to meet with human rights defenders, including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government. She is already in close exchange with the Egyptian ambassador about the visit. "The Chancellor," she explained, "praises the way President al-Sisi deals with the Copts. But I have also heard that this is quite different on the ground ". "That's why," she added, "the committee travels to Egypt to get first-hand information." She would "very much like to visit prisons". Even if she is aware that one does not get an "actual impression" of the conditions of detention. The plan is to meet with human rights defenders, including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government. she explained, "praising the dealings of President al-Sisi with the Copts. But I have also heard that this is quite different on the ground ". "That's why," she added, "the committee travels to Egypt to get first-hand information." She would "very much like to visit prisons". Even if she is aware that one does not get an "actual impression" of the conditions of detention. The plan is to meet with human rights defenders, including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government. she explained, "praising the dealings of President al-Sisi with the Copts. But I have also heard that this is quite different on the ground ". "That's why," she added, "the committee travels to Egypt to get first-hand information." She would "very much like to visit prisons". Even if she is aware that one does not get an "actual impression" of the conditions of detention. The plan is to meet with human rights defenders, including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government. she added, "the committee travels to Egypt to get first-hand information." She would "very much like to visit prisons". Even if she is aware that one does not get an "actual impression" of the conditions of detention. The plan is to meet with human rights defenders, including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government. she added, "the committee travels to Egypt to get first-hand information." She would "very much like to visit prisons". Even if she is aware that one does not get an "actual impression" of the conditions of detention. The plan is to meet with human rights defenders, including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government. including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government. including representatives of the Al-Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture. The center ran a special clinic for victims, but in 2017 was closed by the government.

According to the Foreign Office, the human rights situation in Egypt is "extremely worrying." The death penalty is again being imposed more frequently under President al-Sisi, and has increasingly been enforced since December 2017. Human rights organizations are "to an unprecedented extent goal of government measures such as account closures, exit bans and investigations." Human rights defenders are increasingly intimidated and, in some cases, victims of "enforced enforced disappearance by state security." According to Amnesty International, torture by security forces in Egypt is a daily occurrence - with beatings, electric shocks, tearing out of fingernails. IGFM board spokesman Martin Lessenthin said that the reason for the precarious situation of Christians is the growing Islamic fundamentalism. Radical Islamists, partly supported by Saudi Arabia, could successfully spread their fundamentalist world view. Even in schools and state institutions, such as the world-famous Al-Azhar University, agitators freely propagated human rights violations against people of other faiths and women.

The overthrow of the Muslim Brotherhood has brought "no improvement" for the Copts, stressed Merdhat Klada. Copts would not get higher posts with the police. You would not be admitted as a gynecologist. A Christian can not become a dean of a university. In the diocese of Armant and Esna near Luxor alone, eight churches have been closed since 2013. "The closures were preceded by protests from Islamists. As a rule, they were accompanied by violence against Christians, "Klada said.

In April, Islamists attacked Copts and a church in the village of Beni-Menin in Beni Suef province: "The mob went up against the church and Christian houses with sticks, bricks and stones." In the village of Damshao, Hashim was in the province in August Minya houses of Christians have been robbed and burned down. "In the province of Minya, the stronghold of the Islamists in Upper Egypt, 52 churches were closed and many were" demolished and burned down ". The attacks were mostly successful after Friday prayers in the mosques. Dozens of Coptic girls and women would be abducted and forced into slaughter every year. The police and other authorities would help the perpetrators.

"The free world should put pressure on the regime in Egypt for a humane treatment of Christians," said Medhat Kadla.


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