Ten dead in church attack near Cairo, attacker killed

Ten dead in church attack near Cairo, attacker killed

The High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), strongly condemned in the strongest terms the terrorist attack, which took place today outside Mar Mina Coptic Church in the district of Helwan south of Cairo, Egypt.

Medical and security sources said six of the dead were church-goers and three were police.

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Earlier reports by security sources and state media said at least two attackers were involved, and that one was shot dead and another fled the scene.

A video circulated on social media after the attack apparently shows the dead gunman on the ground. "We stayed inside for 30 minutes before we were able to get out". It was the latest attack targeting Egypt's embattled Christian minority.

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Coptic Christians in Egypt have been faced several attacks by extremist organisations. The claim was carried by the group's Aamaq news agency. The demonstrators shouted anti-Christian slogans and called for the church's demolition, the diocese in the area said at the time.

During a Palm Sunday service in April more than 40 people were killed and many more injured by bomb attacks in two separate cities and in May almost 30 people were killed when gunmen attacked a bus carrying Coptic Christians to a monastery. At least two people were reportedly killed in that attack. The country has been under a state of emergency since April after suicide bombings struck two Coptic Christian churches on Palm Sunday.

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The second assailtant was captured soon after, Reuters reported. President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi has personally chaired meetings with his top security chiefs in recent days to discuss security during New Year's Eve and the Orthodox Christmas. The elderly mother of the aforementioned man was stripped naked and dragged through a street by a mob to humiliate her.

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