Friday, June 15, 2007

Egypt’s Copts, Muslims clash

Here is the story (link)

- Violent clashes have erupted between Muslims and Coptic Christians in the northern city of Alexandria and elsewhere in Egypt, newspapers reported.

One clash was sparked by a row between a young Copt and the son of the imam of the city’s Bilal mosque which resulted in dozens of the faithful from both sides fighting outside the Church of the Holy Virgin in Al-Dekhela district.

Several people were hurt and police arrested 13 Muslims and Copts yesterday, said the independent newspaper Al-Masri Al-Yom which added that the incident underlined growing tensions in the port city and elsewhere.

Anti-riot police had sent 35 vehicles to patrol the district inhabited by members of both communities.

In another incident on Thursday, four people were taken to hospital and 35 arrested in the village of Saft Meydum, south of Cairo.

Violence erupted after a Coptic youth on a bicycle rode into a young Muslim girl whose relatives stormed into the streets heading towards the cyclist’s home intending to stone it, newspapers said.

Copts are estimated to form six to 10 percent of Egypt’s 76 million people.

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