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Egypt's President Morsi: Attack on cathedral is attack 'on me'

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi condemns Sunday attack on Abbasiya cathedral, tells Pope Tawadros II that attacks on Copts are tantamount to attacks against presidency

Ahram Online, Sunday 7 Apr 2013
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Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi has told Coptic Pope Tawadros II via telephone that he considered any attack on Cairo's Coptic cathedral "an attack on me," state television reported on Sunday evening.

The comments follow an attack by unknown assailants on mourners at a Coptic funeral at Cairo's Abbasiya cathedral.

On Sunday afternoon, unidentified elements attacked Cairo's main Coptic cathedral, where a funeral was being held for four Coptic Christians killed in Saturday's sectarian clashes in the Qalioubiya governorate north of Cairo.

In a written statement issued Sunday evening, President Morsi urged the Egyptian public to refrain from taking any actions "that might threaten the nation's security or cohesion."

The president also called for an immediate investigation into Sunday's cathedral attack.

During the latter years of the Mubarak era, Muslim-Christian clashes erupted periodically.Since Mubarak's ouster in early 2011, incidents of sectarian violence – both in the capital and in Egypt's countryside – have occurred with increasing frequency.

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