AFRICA/EGYPT - Egyptian Minister to Christians: security at risk, reduce visits and celebrations in churches

Friday, 9 June 2017 oriental churches   terrorism   middle east   martyrs  


Cairo (Agenzia Fides) - Egypt is under attack by forces wishing to destabilize the Country, and among the security measures promoted by State apparatus there is also the advice to Christians to reduce visits and celebrations in churches and Monasteries, avoiding in this emergency phase to gather conspicuous crowds at places of worship and prayer. The suggestion was expressed in person by Interior Minister Magdi Abdel Ghaffar during a meeting on Thursday, June 8, with the highest security officials in Egyptian provinces where there are risks of terrorist acts implemented against the civilian population and military and police forces. In his speech, reported by the Egyptian media, among other things, Ghaffar confirmed that churches and monasteries will be at the center of appropriate security measures currently managed by the apparatus in coordination with local communities and ecclesial authorities. But he added that the state of emergency urges to reduce visits to churches and monasteries. A recommendation that contradicts recent appeals - expressed by Egyptian tourism policy makers - aimed at enhancing the great North African Country as a destination for pilgrimages to be proposed to all Christians in the world, in the footsteps of the Holy Family, who escaped to Egypt to save the Child Jesus from the violence of Herod. (GV) (Agenzia Fides 9/6/2017)