EGYPT – Court hands down strongest possible sentence to Muslim who slaughtered Christian shopkeeper
A Muslim man who murdered a Christian shopkeeper in an Islamic State style execution in January has been found guilty and sentenced to death by a court in Alexandria. The court’s decision to hand down the strongest possible sentence for the murder sends a clear message that Christians cannot be killed with impunity. Youssef Lamei, the 45-year-old shopkeeper who was killed on 3 January, was one of four Egyptian Christians murdered in the first two weeks of 2017.
Christian minorities are especially vulnerable to miscarriages of justice, particularly in cases where the victim is a Christian and the perpetrator and police are Muslim. However, the Egyptian courts’ swift prosecution of Youssef Lamei‘s murderer and the recent decision to reopen the case of a 70-year-old Christian grandmother beaten by a Muslim mob in May 2016 are positive steps for justice.
From Egypt Independent here
EGYPT – Local officials refuse Christians permission to meet; fundamentalist Muslims “wielding their power and imposing their will”
There will be no public celebration of Easter in the village of Kom Al Lufi, as the village’s Christians are still being refused permission to meet by authorities, nine months after Muslim rioters destroyed several Christian homes after falsely claiming one would be used as a church. Following the violence, a building in which believers had gathered to pray was closed, although local officials later pledged to re-open it to allow Christians to meet.
“We [still] have to travel to other nearby villages [to hold services],” explains one Christian resident. “Means of transport are not easy here, meaning that the aged and weak can never manage to go.” Even though the Egyptian government has passed new legislation to replace stringent Ottoman-era restrictions on churches, the Christians of Kom Al Lufi still have nowhere to gather. “Even though there is no killing … fundamentalist Muslims are wielding their power and imposing their will against our need to pray.”
From Wataninet here