Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox Church announced Monday the death of a newly transferred monk after a "sudden health crisis."
In a statement published by its spokesman on Facebook, the Church said monk Zaynoun El-Makary died after he was transferred to St Maria Hospital in Upper Egypt’s Assiut after a sudden decline in health.
The prosecution is currently investigating the cause of death.
His death took place one month after the Church’s Monastic and Monastery Affairs Committee decided to transfer him to Deir El-Muharraq Monastery in the Upper Egyptian governorate.
The Church did not provide more details on El-Makary’s monastic background or the reason behind the transfer to the new monastery. However, several local media reports said that he is the Father Confessor of one of the defendants — defrocked monk Isaiah El-Makary — in the case of the alleged murder of Bishop Epiphanius, who was found dead at Abu Maqar Monastery in July.
Reports said Zaynoun was among witnesses in investigations related to the bishop's death, while others said suicide was the cause of death.
Following the death of Bishop Epiphanius, the Holy Synod issued new decrees prohibiting monks’ use of social media, media appearances by monks, and the construction of unlicensed sites of worship.