Last Update 22:51
Monday, 14 October 2019

Gunmen attack Egyptian Coptic church in Libya's Benghazi

Gunmen attack an Egyptian Coptic church in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi, assaulting two priests

AFP , Monday 4 Mar 2013
Members of the Libyan preventative security display the Christian books and Compact Disks, that was confiscated in Benghazi, Libya, Monday, Feb, 18 2013. ( Photo: AP)
Views: 2197
Views: 2197

Gunmen have attacked an Egyptian Coptic church in Libya's eastern city of Benghazi, assaulting two priests, the foreign ministry said Sunday, days after dozens of Egyptian Christians suspected of proselytising were arrested.

The foreign ministry said it "strongly condemned Thursday's attack on the Egyptian church... and the aggression towards Father Paula Isaac and his deputy by the irresponsible armed men."

It did not elaborate on the attacks or give any details of injuries.

The government has formed a commission of inquiry involving the interior, defence and justice ministries, and has "taken the necessary measures to secure the church and its occupants," the ministry added.

It expressed "deep concern" over the attack, saying it was "contrary to the rules" of Islam and to international laws on human rights and basic freedoms.

Since the 2011 revolution that ousted the late dictator Moamer Kadhafi, Libya's small Christian minority has expressed fears over Islamic extremism, especially with the rise of armed militias enforcing their own law in the absence of central control.

A Libyan security official said on Friday that around 50 Egyptian traders who were suspected of trying to convert Muslims -- something strictly banned in Islam -- had been arrested in Benghazi on illegal immigration charges.

Four foreigners -- an Egyptian, a South African, a South Korean and a Swede with a US passport -- were also arrested in Libya's second city in mid-February on suspicion of trying to convert Muslims to Christianity.

In December, two Egyptians died in a blast at a Coptic church in the Libyan coastal town of Dafniya.

Short link:


Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

© 2010 Ahram Online.