Egypt’s cabinet legalises 141 unlicensed churches, Christian service buildings

Ahram Online , Wednesday 12 Jan 2022

Egypt’s official gazette published on Wednesday a cabinet decree to legalise the status of 50 unlicensed churches and 91 Christian service buildings that had been operating without a permit.

Inside an Egyptian church
A file photo of Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church (Photo: AFP)

According to the information released in the decree, the churches and service buildings approved are mostly Egyptian Coptic Orthodox, with the minority being Protestant.

Coptic Orthodox Christians make up around 90 percent of all Christians in the country.

The newly legalised churches and service buildings are located in Cairo, Alexandria, Sharqiya, Daqahaliya, Menoufiya, Minya, Assiut, Qena, and Sohag.

In 2016, Egypt’s parliament approved a long-awaited law regulating the building and renovation of churches.

The committee to legalise the status of unlicensed churches was established in 2017 by Sherif Ismail, the prime minister at the time.

Since its formation in 2017, the committee has legalised the status of over 2,000 churches and service buildings in the country.

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