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Prompted by conversion rumour, crowds attack church in central Egypt

Sectarian tensions in Beni Suef erupt after reports that a Muslim woman had converted to Christianity and left the country with a Christian man

Ahram Online , Friday 26 Apr 2013
Views: 2052
Riot police encircle Saint George’s Church in Al-Wasata city in the governorate of Beni Suef (Photo: AO)

Ahram Arabic website reported that clashes broke out between protesters and security forces at Saint George's Church in Beni Suef, with eight people injured and 11 arrested.

Angry Muslim protesters attempted to storm Saint George’s Church in Al-Wasata city in the governorate of Beni Suef on Friday.

Tensions erupted in the city recently after reports that a 21-year-old Muslim girl had disappeared, with her family accusing a Christian family in the city of forcing her to convert to Christianity and facilitating her travel to Turkey with a Coptic Christian man.

Local Islamist groups had given the Christian family a deadline to return the girl, which expired on Friday, reported Ahram's Arabic language website.

Security forces fired teargas grenades at angry protesters, who attempted to storm the church following the Friday Muslim prayer, and arrested five people for throwing Molotov cocktails at the church.

Security vehicles and forces are reportedly surrounding churches in the city.  

A number of traders have already closed their shops, particularly Christian jewelers who fear they will be targets.

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27-04-2013 12:43am
Is Islam so fragile?
I don't know whether or not anyone converted to what religion. But so what if the woman converted to Christianity? Isn't this between her and God? Isn't God who made the universe the judge? Yet, it astonishes me that these incidents keep happening. Is Islam so fragile that it cannot stand on its own right? Why are so many Muslims scared that if left to people's free will, Islam will lose its followers that they have to resort to this kind of intimidation and violence? This is exactly the tactics of gangs and rogue regimes....leave us and we will kill you!
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29-04-2013 03:17am
How many Salafists....
kept hitting dislike on this comment?
28-04-2013 07:01pm
Not Islam
THis is not action for Islam, it's family honour. It happens both sides.
28-04-2013 05:29pm
Please think!
I can see from the number of "dislikes", that this has ruffled a few feathers! Hopefully, it has also stimulated some minds to think.

Aly , the Egyptian
26-04-2013 08:25pm
The Nation...
I really don't know what to say....and I'd rather not..!! Or maybe enough is enough...or even better,...THE STONE AGE IS GONE SINCE's prehistoric..O.K....So calme down
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26-04-2013 07:11pm
So what?
Where is the freedom of believe as mentioned in Quran??? Are those people getting mad? If this woman (I think with 21 years you are a "woman" not a "girl" anymore and you can decide freely about your life) wants to become a copt, SO WHAT? And if she goes to Turkey with a Christian, ok, let her go! Who is her master to forbid this???
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