Washington Post: Egyptian security officials say a Coptic Christian who stabbed his wife for converting to Islam has killed himself by jumping out of a fourth-story courthouse window.
Boston Globe: Amnesty International has called on Egyptian authorities to release a Coptic Christian schoolteacher held for contempt of Islam.
Christian Post: The mass exodus of millions of Christians from one part of the Islamic world to another as the result of persecution by Muslims has reached epidemic proportions, says a Middle East and Islam expert. In fact, Christians may completely disappear from Iraq, Afghanistan, and Egypt, warns the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.
Washington Times: Gaza “modesty police” are out in full force, and have arrested more than 40 in April alone, driving fears that Hamas-inspired Islamic fundamentalism is taking over the region.
Telegraph: The Islamic Society of North America, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, has published an article that calls Andalusia – the hottest bit of Spain – a “paradise” that will return when “the only victor is Allah.”
AP: The legal adviser of Egypt’s Islamist President Mohammed Morsi resigned Tuesday, alleging that the Muslim Brotherhood has monopolized decision-making and encroached on the governing of the country.
Boston Globe (AP): Egypt’s main opposition group and judges vowed Monday to step up their fight against plans by the Islamist-dominated legislature to debate a bill critics say aims to impose Muslim Brotherhood control over the courts.
Ken Blackwell at Townhall: Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood’s governing majority, is not actually crucifying the nation’s Christians. But they are nonetheless actively persecuting Coptic Christians who are said to be one-tenth of the population of the largest Arab country. A photograph of two young men set afire during recent demonstrations is pretty striking.
Christian Post: The Ministry of Awqaf’s decision was signed by Sheikh Mohamed Abdel Razik Abdel Hadi, the undersecretary for mosques, and Dr. Abdu Ali Meklad, senior undersecretary of the ministry. The decision prevents all departments across the country from having dealings with the Evangelical Church of Egypt.
Ryamond Ibrahim at Middle East Forum: While it is easy to confuse the recent jihadi attack on Egypt’s St. Mark Cathedral in Cairo as just more of the usual, this attack has great symbolic significance, and in many ways bodes great evil for Egypt’s millions of Christians.
Christian Post: More than 500 Christian girls have been reported kidnapped in Egypt since the revolution began in January 2011, with the age of the girls kidnapped usually being between 12 and 14.
NY Times: gyptian activists have begun an online campaign against sectarianism in the wake of a deadly attack on mourners at Egypt’s main Coptic Christian cathedral this month.
Christian Today: Ramez Atallah said he had a “heavy heart” following the deaths of four Christians in skirmishes in Khosous and the subsequent deaths of three more people in an attack on crowds gathered for their funerals at St Mark’s Cathedral, Cairo.
Reuters: When Egyptian Christian Kerollos Maher watched on television as petrol bombs and rocks rained on Cairo’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral he had only one thought – emigration. “Egypt is no longer my country,” said the 24-year-old construction worker, standing in the courtyard of the country’s largest cathedral where one Copt and one Muslim died in sectarian clashes this week. “The situation of Christians is worsening from day to day. I’ve given up hope that things will improve,” he said.
National Review: Yesterday from Egypt, Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II delivered an unprecedented condemnation of the escalating religious attacks there against Coptic Christians: “The church has been a national symbol for 2,000 years,” he told a television interviewer. “It has not been subjected to anything like this even during the darkest ages. . . . There has been no positive and clear action from the state, but there is a God. The church does not ask for anyone’s protection, only from God.”
Gateway Pundit: Shouldn’t we be able to see an audit of every taxpayer dollar spent on the Muslim Brotherhood? Between the F-16′s, US millions of dollars wasted on Afghanistan police cars, direct money aid, and now this.
Christian Post: There are several reports suggesting that Egyptian police were aiding the attackers, who were seen by witnesses throwing stones and discharging live rounds towards Coptic Christians at the cathedral.
AP: The leader of Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox Church on Tuesday blasted the country’s Islamist president over his handling of recent deadly sectarian violence, including an attack on the main cathedral in Cairo.
AP: Another 89 were injured in the clashes outside Cairo’s main Coptic cathedral, which brought Egypt’s growing religious tension to the seat of the church’s pope.
Independent: Alastair Beach sees gunfire exchanged as armed gang descends on funeral of five Christians killed in recent sectarian clashes.
Fox News: Ezzat Kromer’s resistance to his kidnappers did not last long. One of the masked gunmen fired a round between his feet as he sat behind the wheel of his car and said with chilling calm, “The next one will go into your heart.”
en.aswatmasriya.com: Opposition parties’ representatives in Egypt’s Shura Council (upper house of the parliament) threatened to withdraw from the council’s evening session on Tuesday, if parliament members pass a draft bill regulating political rights that allows use of religious slogans in electoral campaigns.
FoxNews: Islamic hard-liners stormed a mosque in suburban Cairo, turning it into torture chamber for Christians who had been demonstrating against the ruling Muslim Brotherhood in the latest case of violent persecution that experts fear will only get worse.
LA Times: The Islamist-led government escalated tensions with opposition parties Monday after Egypt’s prosecutor general ordered the arrest of five activists, including a prominent blogger, for violent protests against the Muslim Brotherhood over the weekend.
ASSIST News Service: According to a story by Mary Abdelmassih of the Assyrian International News Agency (AINA), they were protesting the disappearance of a Muslim girl, Rania Shazli, 19. They accused the priest of St. George’s Church in Wasta of using black magic to lure her to Christianity.
AP: Some 3,000 anti-Muslim Brotherhood protesters are rallying outside the Egyptian Islamist group’s Cairo headquarters as riot police separate them from hundreds of Brotherhood supporters.
Boston Globe (AP): Hundreds of Muslim villagers in Egypt’s south have attacked Christian-owned stores in search of a girl whose family claims was abducted.
Anglican Communion: Five different churches in Egypt including the Coptic Orthodox Church, the Catholic Church, the Evangelical (Presbyterian) Church, the Greek Orthodox Church and the Anglican Church have joined together to form the Egypt Council of Churches after one year of deliberations and meetings between the churches.
Boston Globe: Several Egyptian Christians recently released from detention by Libyan militias say they were tortured while in custody, the latest instance of abuse by the state-financed forces who handle security in many Libyan cities.
Catholic Culture: Patriarch Ibrahim Isaac Sidrak was enthroned as patriarch of the Coptic Catholic Church on March 12 as his predecessor, Cardinal Antonios Naguib, was taking part in the Mass for the election of the Roman Pontiff at St. Peter’s Basilica.
AP: An Egyptian Christian who died in prison in Libya after he was detained on suspicion of having proselytized there has been buried in a subdued ceremony in his hometown in southern Egypt.
Miami Herald: Protesters burned a flag belonging to the Libyan Embassy in Cairo on Monday to protest the death in prison of an Egyptian Christian suspected of proselytizing in Libya.
The Hill: Secretary of State John Kerry had hoped to offer considerably more aid to Egypt than the $250 million he announced during his trip to Cairo but was blocked by Congress, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-Calif.) said.
Coptic Solidarity: Secretary Kerry met with Egyptian President Morsi last week, announcing that the US will give Egypt $250 million in aid. While applauding continuing economic support to the suffering people of Egypt, Coptic Solidarity expressed deep concern that US foreign assistance be used to bolster a Muslim Brotherhood-led government, which has actively undermined the civil rights of millions of its citizens.
AP: The court says in its Wednesday ruling that the law organizing the elections must be reviewed by the Supreme Constitutional Court to determine its conformity to the constitution.
Egypt Independent: Salafi Preacher Safwat Hegazy said on Monday that Shia Islam “will never exist in Egypt,” reacting to the recent visit by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
AP: Dozens of Muslim residents threw firebombs and rocks at police on Friday as they tried to storm a church in southern Egypt in search of a woman suspected of converting to Christianity, security officials said.
Lela Gilbert at Patheos: A few days ago a chilling video appeared on BBC’s website, relating the story of a Coptic Christian man, Victor Schata-Michael, who had fled Egypt with his wife and children because of religious persecution. Schata-Michael was desperate to save his family from dangers that increasingly threaten Egypt’s Coptic community, comprised of 8-10 million Christians.
Vatican Today: More than one year after the Arab Spring, Christians in Egypt continue to suffer persecution. The latest attack happened Friday, when a mob of a few hundred people threw stones and set fire to St. Georgas Coptic Church in Sarsena. The village is located about 100 km southwest of Cairo.
Religion Clause Blog: Christian Churches Together, an organization of over 40 Christian church groups (Catholic, Orthodox, evangelical and main-line Protestant) last week issued a press release and Statement (full text) calling for comprehensive immigration law reform.
CNSNews: The U.S. Senate Thursday defeated an amendment that aimed to prevent the Obama administration from transferring F-16 fighter aircraft and Abrams tanks to an Egypt in disarray.
AP: Thousands of Egyptians marched across the country, chanting against the rule of the Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, in a fresh wave of protests Friday, even as cracks appeared in the ranks of the opposition after its political leaders met for the first time with the rival Muslim Brotherhood.
Telegraph: Egypt is nearing “state collapse”, its defence minister and army chief warned in comments widely seen as a threat to re-impose military rule.
ABC: An unpredictable new element has entered Egypt’s wave of political unrest: a mysterious group of masked young men called the Black Bloc who present themselves as the defenders of protesters opposed to the Islamist president’s rule.
AP: Egypt’s main opposition coalition on Monday rejected the Islamist president’s call for dialogue unless their conditions are met, a move that is likely to prolong the country’s latest political crisis as violence that has left more than 50 people dead continued for a fifth day.
AP: Two years after Egypt’s revolution began, the country’s schism was on display Friday as the mainly liberal and secular opposition held rallies saying the goals of the pro-democracy uprising have not been met and denouncing Islamist President Mohammed Morsi.
Nina Shea at National Review: The State Department’s very quiet, if not silent, response to the imprisonment and abuse of an American citizen now on trial for his Christian faith in Iran, described by David French on the Corner, is consistent with its sphinx-like reaction to the new Egyptian constitution, which virtually enshrines repression of basic individual freedoms.
Free Beacon: The State Department has refused to cancel or delay the delivery of several American-made F-16 fighter jets to Egypt, claiming that the arms deal serves America’s “regional security interests,” according to an official State Department document obtained by the Free
Christian Persecution: Thousands of Egyptian Muslims shouting “Allahu Akbar” left their mosques Wednesday to destroy a social services building owned by the Coptic Church.
Fox News: The 15-year prison sentence given to a woman and her seven children by an Egyptian court for converting to Christianity is a sign of things to come, according to alarmed human rights advocates who say the nation’s Islamist government is bad news for Christians in the North African country.
Investors.com: The radical Muslim Brotherhood doesn’t just threaten Israel and Mideast peace. According to the Egyptian press, several of its operatives have infiltrated the U.S. government and are influencing policy here.
Houston Chronicle: U.S. Sen. John McCain said Wednesday he has expressed strong disapproval to Egypt’s Islamist president about his past comments about Jews. Despite an uproar in Washington over the remarks, he said he and other congressmen will press for more aid to Egypt’s ailing economy.
AP: The only female judge to sit on Egypt’s highest court says she has filed the first legal challenge against the country’s highly contentious constitution, which cost her the seat she held.
Religion Clause Blog: The suit, which has been referred to the chief prosecutor for investigation, revolves around a cartoon (reproduced on Cartoon Movement) depicting an Egyptian man with angel wings and a halo on a cloud with Adam and Eve telling them they would never have been expelled from heaven if they had voted in favor of the referendum.
Middle East Forum: Islamic leaders continue to portray the popular protests against President Morsi and his recently passed Sharia-heavy constitution as products of Egypt’s Christians. Recently, Muslim Brotherhood leader Safwat Hegazy said in an open rally, as captured on video . . .
AP: Egypt’s Foreign Ministry says an explosion at an Egyptian Coptic church in Libya’s third largest city, Misrata, has killed two people and wounded two others.
Reuters: Egyptian Islamists are planning a mass protest in Alexandria on Friday in a move likely to raise tensions on the eve of a divisive referendum that will determine the political future of the Arab world’s biggest nation.
AP: Thousands of Islamists clashed with their opponents on Friday in Egypt’s second largest city, Alexandria, a day before the second leg of voting on a proposed constitution that has deeply polarized the nation.
AP: An Egyptian atheist convicted then released from prison on bail this week told The Associated Press Wednesday that the new Islamist government is no better than the dictatorial regime it replaced.
Christian Post: Christian voters were not permitted to cast ballots in some polling places during the December 15 constitutional referendum, the Associated Press and BBC reported.
Reuters: Opponents of Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi staged protests in Cairo on Tuesday against an Islamist-backed draft constitution that has divided Egypt but looks set to be approved in the second half of a referendum this weekend.
Boston Globe: They said that the president’s appointment of Abdullah was improper. They said the Supreme Judicial Council should have been the one to nominate him, in order to ensure a separation of powers
National Review: In Cairo on Wednesday, a Coptic Christian blogger named Alber Saber was convicted of blasphemy and “contempt of religion.” There’s a tragic irony: As any of the country’s Christians can tell you, contempt of religion is not merely permitted but encouraged in the new, post-Mubarak Egypt. What is criminal, what has become increasingly perilous, is any criticism of Islam.
Jihad Watch: There will be another round of voting, and so the story isn’t quite over yet, and “narrowly” doesn’t matter once the dust has settled, but it’s noteworthy that even with all the voter intimidation, guilt manipulation and commands to vote yes from the imams, and threats and violence, the Islamic supremacists could only get 56.5% of the vote. Clearly a huge number of Egyptians, and possibly a majority, don’t want a Sharia state.
Voice of America: As Egyptians prepare to vote in the first round of a constitutional referendum Saturday, both opponents and supporters of the controversial document were out in the streets to protest.
National Review: As Egypt under the heel of Mohamed Morsi unravels, here’s the late-breaking news: The Muslim Brotherhood is the enemy of democracy. This has always been obvious to anyone who took the time to look into it. Nevertheless, it has not been an easy point to make lo these many years.
Voice of America: Opponents and supporters of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi have taken to the streets of Cairo, converging on the presidential palace in another day of demonstrations that have gripped the capital.
Reuters: Egypt’s Republican Guard restored order around the presidential palace on Thursday after fierce overnight clashes killed seven people, but passions ran high in a struggle over the country’s future.
AP: Supporters and opponents of Egyptian leader Mohammed Morsi pelted each other with rocks and fought with sticks outside the presidential palace in Cairo on Wednesday, as a new round of protests deepened the country’s political crisis.
Reuters: Egyptian police battled thousands of protesters outside President Mohamed Mursi’s palace in Cairo on Tuesday, prompting the Islamist leader to leave the building, presidency sources said.
CNSNews: Drafted by Islamists over the concerns of many non-Muslims and secularist-minded Egyptians, the draft text will be put to a national referendum on December 15, President Mohammed Morsi announced late last week.
AP on MyWay: Thousands of Egyptians massed in Cairo Tuesday for a march to the presidential palace to protest the assumption by the nation’s Islamist president of nearly unrestricted powers and a draft constitution hurriedly adopted by his allies.
Financial Times: It allowed the Muslim Brotherhood, eager to take advantage of its 80-year-old field organisation, to rush parliamentary elections. The outcome was a landslide victory for the Islamists, far beyond their real power base. The constitutional court, after review, dissolved this non-representative parliament.