AFRICA/EGYPT - The government: the fate of the Copts kidnapped in Libya remains unclear

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Cairo (Agenzia Fides) - While the jihadists of the Libyan branch of the Islamic State take control of the city of Sirte, the fate of 21 Christians kidnapped in Libya and held hostage remains unclear. This is what the Egyptian Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab reported on Friday, February 13 in a statement - relaunched by the national media - in which he also reiterated that Egyptian authorities are closely following the situation, according to the instructions of President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi .
On Thursday, the jihadists website had released number 7 of Dabiq, the official magazine of the Islamic State online, which publishes pictures of the kidnapped and held hostage by masked gunmen. The article accused the Coptic Christians - defined as "crusaders of Egypt" of having forced with violence some Coptic women to deny their conversion to Islam. The text also mentions the massacre carried out in 2010 by the terrorists of al-Qaeda in the Syrian Catholic cathedral in Baghdad, first presented as a "revenge" for the alleged violence by the Copts in Egypt.
Yesterday, the families of the kidnapped Copts - who had been seized near the Libyan city of Sirte in early January - held a protest in Cairo against the government. (GV) Fides 14/02/2015)