Egypt's Coptic pope to receive condolences for Al-Khosous victims on Thursday

Ahram Online, Monday 8 Apr 2013

Pope Tawadros II to hold reception for public figures to offer condolences after four Copts killed in recent violence

Egypt's Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II, along with other bishops, will recieve public figures in the papal premises wishing to offer condolences for those killed in recent protests on Thursday, according to the Youth Bishopric's Facebook page.

Four Christians and one Muslim were killed, and eight others injured in the violence, Egypt's health ministry reported. A Coptic priest, however, told the private CBC satellite channel Sunday that six Copts had died in addition to many more injured.

The deadly clashes erupted in Qalioubiya on Saturday between groups of Muslim and Christian teenagers after the latter allegedly painted offensive drawings on the gates of an Al-Azhar institution in the town, MENA news agency reported.

The situation further escalated when someone drew a gun and fired into the air, killing one boy with a stray bullet, Reuters reported.

Clashes broke out on Sunday outside the headquarters of the Coptic Orthodox Church - which represents Egypt's largest Christian population - during a funeral for Copts killed in sectarian clashes with Muslims in Qalioubiya (just north of Cairo) in some of the worst sectarian violence in Egypt in months.

Police then fired teargas and birdshot directly into the compound of the place of worship, sparking uproar among the Christian community.

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