Egypt may not currently be the best country in the world, however, with its citizens and leaders, Egypt strives to be one of the best societies in the world. This will be accomplished through serious steps, major projects, working hands of our youth, and the help of our friendsCairo (Agenzia Fides) - The "dignity of Egypt" is expressed "by the dignity and honorable reception of Egypt's President as His Excellence deserves". This is why Egyptian Copts are called to offer the necessary warmth "to Egypt, represented by its beloved President who arrives in the land of immigration, expressing their warm welcome with respect, honor and dignity". These are the most clear and peremptory expressions with which Coptic Orthodox Patriarch Tawadros II, in a letter released yesterday by the Patriarchate, wanted to confirm the appeal issued in recent days by the Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese in North America to the Copt faithful living in the US (see Fides 12/09/2016), so that they publicly show their support to President Abdel Fattah al Sisi during his visit to New York, on the occasion of the 71st UN general Assembly (UNGA71).
The intervention of the Patriarch also aims at responding to the adverse reactions registered in some Orthodox Coptic communities in front of such appeal: "many people", Pope Tawadros writes in his letter, sent to Agenzia Fides, "can be victimized as a result of wrong and incorrect information fed by the media, that publish lies and slanders against the true lives of Egyptians, both Copts and Muslims". These articles, according to the Patriarch, manipulate the facts: "Egypt" adds the Primate of the Coptic Orthodox Church, "may not currently be the best country in the world, however, with its leaders and citizens Egypt strives to be one of the best societies in the world. This will be accomplished through serious steps, major projects, working hands of our youth, and with the help of our friends".
The singular ecclesial initiative of the Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America - that invited the Copts living in the US to take part in a demonstration convened on 20 September in New York, in front of the UN building, to publicly express its support for Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al Sisi - followed the controversy raised in late July of public demonstrations held by some groups of the Coptic diaspora also in Washington, at the White House, to protest against the violence suffered by Christians in Egypt.
Before those demonstrations, the Coptic Orthodox Patriarchate had launched alarms against possible exploitation, and distrust to arrange overseas mobilizations and public campaigns that could be perceived as attempts of "interference" in Egypt's internal affairs, implemented by organizations and foreign groups. Egyptian writer Michel Fahmy had argued these demonstrations, emphasizing that only the Egyptian State is capable of protecting even the Copts from sectarian violence, a goal which in his opinion neither the militants of the Orthodox Coptic diaspora, nor the Copts MPs in the Egyptian Parliament are able to obtain. (GV) (Agenzia Fides 19/09/2016)