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Coptic lay officials reject eviction of Christian families in Alexandria

A Coptic Orthodox group has issued a statement condemning the 'collective punishment' of a number of Christian families who have been ordered by local residents to leave their homes over personal disputes

Sherry El-Gergawi, Monday 13 Feb 2012
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An official Coptic Orthodox body in Alexandria issued a statement today via Coptic activist group the Maspero Youth Union, refusing to accept the eviction of eight Coptic families in the Al-Amerya district of Alexandria, following a customary reconciliation meeting held by a prominent sheikh in the district.

Dr. Kamal Farid, the secretary of the majlis al-milli (lay council), said that the principle of forced deportation of citizens from their residence with their family, being forced to sell their property because of their religious identity without being at fault of guilty of any crime is a flagrant assault on the personal rights guaranteed by the Egyptian constitution, and establishes a dangerous precedent which might allow this to happen in other areas.

Farid said that violations of the law are unacceptable. "Punishment for crimes should muted against persons and should not be collective; punishment cannot be extended to a member of his family or his relatives."

He added that he hoped the case would receive prompt attention on the part of officials, to prevent any violation of the constitution which guarantees the rights of all citizens and explicitly states that all Egyptians are equal in rights and duties. 

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