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Developments in Muslim-Christian relations in the Arab world

36. AWR Daily Overview, May 20, 2013: Pope Tawadros heads to Austria to lead 1st conference for Coptic Churches in Europe

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36. AWR Daily Overview, May 20, 2013: Pope Tawadros heads to Austria to lead 1st conference for Coptic Churches in Europe
Date of source: 
May 20, 2013
Author: 
Myles Ormerod
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Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II heads for Austria on Friday (May 24, 2013) in his second visit abroad, leading the first conference for Coptic Churches in Europe from May 27 to May 30. The conference aims to develop laws and regulations to manage and arrange all the matters of the special service for Coptic Churches abroad. Sources also mentioned that the Church will organize the first conference for the development of Christian education from June 24 until June 27, discussing the establishment of a new bishopric for clerical academies, graduate studies and scientific research (Mustafá Rahūmah, al-Watan, May 20, p. 9). Read original text in Arabic.

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53. AWR Daily Overview, April 6, 2013: Church demands justice by passing Copts Personal Status Law

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53. AWR Daily Overview, April 6, 2013: Church demands justice by passing Copts Personal Status Law
Date of source: 
April 6, 2013
Author: 
Myles Ormerod
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The Coptic Church contacted the Ministry of Justice yesterday (Apr. 5, 2013), demanding the passing of a unified law for Personal Status for Christian communities after years of being ignored. A number of 37 Coptic associations intend to deliver a draft law to Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II following their participation in a workshop held at Saint Bishoy (Bīshūy) Monastery. Munsif Sulaymān, member of the Church and National Council for Human Rights, said that the Church did not form committees for the drafting laws until recently and are now awaiting the response of the Minister of Justice ('Abd al-Wahāb Sha'bān, al-Wafd, Apr. 6, p. 2). Read original text in Arabic.

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26. AWR Daily Overview, April 5, 2013: Return of kidnapped child from Shubrā Church

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26. AWR Daily Overview, April 5, 2013: Return of kidnapped child from Shubrā Church
Date of source: 
April 5, 2013
Author: 
Calum Humphreys
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Al-Qalyūbīya security forces, with the assistance of the intelligence services, seized the men accused of kidnapping a child, Abānūb Ashraf, from in front Saint Paul Church in Shubrā al-Khaymah (Qalyubia governorate) amid gunfire. The investigation uncovered that the five perpetrators distracted the victim's father, kidnapped his son and took him in a stolen car to an abandoned farm in al-Sālahīya al-Jadīdah, where they later burned the car and demanded a one million Egyptian pound ransom for the boy's release. Major General Mahmūd Yūsrī, head of Qalyubia Security Department, confirmed that the five perpetrators, most of whom were unregistered, were seized without difficulty. Ashraf said, after being freed, that he was terrified and his kidnapper had treated him him cruelly ('Abd al-Hakam al-Jindī, al-Misrī al-Yawm, Apr. 5, p. 3). Read original text in Arabic.

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32. Media focus on tensions between Muslims and Christians but Father Yu’annis of Qufādah explains that in his village Christians and Muslims get along well together

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32. Media focus on tensions between Muslims and Christians but Father Yu’annis of Qufādah explains that in his village Christians and Muslims get along well together
Date of source: 
May 20, 2013
Author: 
Cornelis Hulsman
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Repeatedly we hear of reports that Muslims are attacking Christians. One such recent report is a clash in Alexandria in which one Christian died from a heart attack.  “A fight started between two young men, one Copt and the other Muslim, when the Copt allegedly sexually harassed the latter's sister. It is not clear from this report what this harassment entailed.  The parties involved in the fight reportedly used Molotov cocktails and machine guns” (Full story here). 

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22. AWR Daily Overview, May 19, 2013: 0.5M Copts signed petition to withdraw confidence from Mursi

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22. AWR Daily Overview, May 19, 2013: 0.5M Copts signed petition to withdraw confidence from Mursi
Date of source: 
May 19, 2013
Author: 
Myles Ormerod
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A number of priests and political groups participated in marches yesterday (May 18, 2013) calling for the withdrawal of confidence for President Muhammad Mursī (Mursi) in Shubrā. Estimates show that about half a million of Copts have signed the petition. This campaign is scheduled to continue until June 30 as priests are urging more Copts to sign the petition in spite of their non-interference in politics (Mustafá Sha'bān and Nuhá 'Uthmān, al-Misrīyūn, May 19, p. 3). Read original text in Arabic.

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17. AWR Daily Overview, May 16, 2013: Copts, Muslims suffer oppression of Islamists, says Associated Press

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17. AWR Daily Overview, May 16, 2013: Copts, Muslims suffer oppression of Islamists, says Associated Press
Date of source: 
May 16, 2013
Author: 
Calum Humphreys
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The Associated Press stated that, in the light of the arrest of Coptic teacher Dimīyānah 'Abd al-Nūr for disdaining religion, Egypt is witnessing a violent trend of similar allegations that have been launched by Islamists against all who criticize them, especially the Christians. It added that the Copts suffering has doubled since the ascension to power of the Islamists and the Muslim Brotherhood, pointing to the story of al-Nūr as one of the examples of religious radicalism in Egypt. However, the Copts are not the only ones accused of distorting of religion by Islamists, Muslims also suffer prosecution for religious distortion and for insulting the President (Umnīyah Najīb, al-Watan, May 16, p. 5). Read original text in Arabic.

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12. AWR Daily Overview, May 15, 2013: New sectarian incidents in Minya

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12. AWR Daily Overview, May 15, 2013: New sectarian incidents in Minya
Date of source: 
May 15, 2013
Author: 
Calum Humphreys
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The village of Tahā in al-Minya governorate witnessed fitnah tā'ifīyah due the tackling of Muslims villagers by a member of the Coptic community about digging taking place on Church land. Engineer Mahmūd Sa'd, declared that the new constructions especially the church did not obtain licenses and promised to raise the issue with Governor Dr. Mustafá 'Isá. Ihāb al-Bayūmī, a member of the village, said that the village has three churches despite a Muslim majority (Najlah Fathī and 'Alī Husayn, al-Dustūr, May 15, p. 5). Read original text in Arabic.

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18. AWR Daily Overview, April 4, 2013: Religious slogans are sacred, shouldn't be used in elections

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18. AWR Daily Overview, April 4, 2013: Religious slogans are sacred, shouldn't be used in elections
Date of source: 
April 4, 2013
Author: 
Myles Ormerod
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The Shūrá Council decided yesterday (April 3, 2013) to repeal the article which prohibits candidates using of religious slogans in elections, however this met with opposition especially from Copt who refused it completely. Rev. Andrea Zakī, Deputy Head of the Coptic Evangelical Church, said that the use of religious slogans is inappropriate because it undermines its sanctity (Peter Majdī, al-Tahrīr, Apr. 4, p. 8). Read original text in Arabic.

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13. AWR Daily Overview, May 1, 2013: Girl from Beni Suef sparks controversy between Copts and Muslim Brotherhood at Shūrá Council

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13. AWR Daily Overview, May 1, 2013: Girl from Beni Suef sparks controversy between Copts and Muslim Brotherhood at Shūrá Council
Date of source: 
May 1, 2013
Author: 
Myles Ormerod
Summary
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Hātim Kamāl al-Shāzlī said that his daughter Ranā, who has been missing for seventy days, ran off to Turkey with a young Christian from Beni Suef. Al-Shāzlī accused Coptic clergy of using Salafī Black Magic on his daughter, forcing her to convert from Islam to Christianity. Despite the findings of the local authorities, these allegations have been denied by the Church (Muhammad Hamdī and Muhammad 'Abd al-Latīf al-Saghīr, al-Watan, May 1, p. 3). Read original text in Arabic.

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3. AWR Daily Overview, May 14, 2013: Copts file reports on armed robberies on their lands in Luxor

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3. AWR Daily Overview, May 14, 2013: Copts file reports on armed robberies on their lands in Luxor
Date of source: 
May 14, 2013
Author: 
Diana Maher Ghali
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A number of Christians filed police reports to Luxor Police Station about armed robberies on their lands from gangs. Christians had doubts that the police ignored their reports because months have passed on the robberies without an action. (Muhammad ‘Abd al-Latīf al-Saghīr, al-Watan, May 14, p. 3). Read original text in Arabic.

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