Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/19/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Coptic community becoming targets of Islamist militias.

In a troubling development, Egyptian Copts in Libya say one of their number has been killed by a militia while detained along with dozens of other Copts. Copts accuse Libyan militias, with the tacit approval of the government, of harassing, arresting, torturing, and now killing Christians.

Egyptian Copts wear tattoos such as this cross, which Libyans are using as evidence of guilt.

Egyptian Copts wear tattoos such as this cross, which Libyans are using as evidence of guilt.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/19/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Africa

Keywords: Libya, Copts, Christians, persecution, murder, proselytizing, Islam, Muslim, militias


BENGHAZI, LIBYA (Catholic Online) - Egyptian Copts are angry over the suspicious death of one of their own at the hands of his Libyan captors. A shopkeeper, who was also a Copt, was arrested by a Benghazi militia and accused of "proselytizing." That individual was later allegedly tortured and killed while in detention.

Dozens of other Copts are also in detention accused of similar "crimes."

Copts are one of the largest minorities of Christians in the Middle East and North Africa, and their leadership is based in Egypt. Despite their native status to the region, they face increasing persecution from Muslims in both Egypt and Libya as Muslims see them as a threat to their virtual stranglehold on religious thought.

On February 26, Benghazi militiamen rounded up and arrested several dozen Egyptian Copts that were living and working in the city, mostly as shopkeepers. Egyptians make the largest minority group in Libya, frequently traveling to the country to work.

According to the Benghazi militia, many of those arrested were caught with proselytizing literature and had crosses tattooed on their hands or bodies, which confirmed their proselytizing intentions.

The shopkeepers have been accused of "impurity" and dishonesty in dealing with native Libyans.

One of those detainees died under mysterious circumstances on Monday, following his transfer to Tripoli. It is unknown why he was transferred, but his lawyers accuse his jailers of torturing him to death.

Sympathetic protestors have taken to the street in Egypt, one burning a Libyan flag before the Libyan embassy in Cairo.

Last Thursday evening, the Coptic church in Benghazi was also burned down by angry Muslim protesters.

The violence perpetrated by Muslims against Copts is part of a disturbing trend of discrimination against Christians in that part of the world. Although the Arab Spring revolutions were intended to bring a new wave of democracy and freedom to the people of Northern Africa, thus far those freedoms only appear to belong to Muslims. In all countries, Muslim conservatives have seized power and established constitutions that systematically alienate Christian minorities.

The increasing marginalization of these minorities means that Christians in that region will be increasingly exposed to harassment, and even martyrdom.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2014
Peace:
That the Lord may grant peace to those parts of the world most battered by war and violence.
World Mission Day: That World Mission Day may rekindle in every believer zeal for carrying the Gospel into all the world.



Comments


More Africa

From the infected could come life! Blood from recovered Ebola patients could hold key to stopping outbreak Watch

Image of A potential serum from the blood of infected and recovered Ebola patients could provide the key to halting the ongoing outbreak.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A new tool in the fight against Ebola could come from those who have been infected with the disease and lived. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The World Health Organization (WHO) says that serums made from blood of recovered Ebola patients may be available within ... continue reading


New documentary reveals King Tut had a club foot and other startling discoveries Watch

Image of More than 100 walking sticks were found inside his tomb. While historians originally thought they represented his power, it's now more likely that Tut used them to get around.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

King Tutankhamun, or as he is more commonly know, "King Tut" was an ancient Egyptian pharaoh who ruled over much of the civilized world until his untimely death at the age of 19 years of age. Researchers in a new British television documentary have conducted a ... continue reading


Programs help young women in Kenya flee prostitution Watch

Image of Poverty forces many young women in Kenya into lives of prostitution.

By Katy Migiro, Thomson Reuters Foundation

The alcohol lining the 12-year-old Kenyan girl's stomach did nothing to quell her hunger pangs. NAIROBI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - So when one of her mother's drunken customers, in the one-room drinking den that doubles as their home in Nairobi, offered her a ... continue reading


Algerian-Libyan border under lockdown due to deteriorating situation in Benghazi Watch

Image of Algeria has since taken serious measures to reinforce the country's security.

By Kaci Racelma (Algiers, Algeria)

The deteriorating situation in Libya - in particular in the eastern city of Benghazi, has the Algerian people calling for more protection along the borders it shares with that nation. The Algerian government has decided to deploy important methods to enhance ... continue reading


Fierce fighting rages in Benghazi amid political instability Watch

Image of Analysts say the recent surge in violence in Libya could jeopardize dialogue initiated in late September by the United Nations, in order to stop the violence and institutional anarchy in the country.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Fierce fighting between troops loyal to the retired general, Khalifa Haftar and those loyal to Ansar Charia continues to rage on in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi. The city has been one of the most troubled areas of this North African oil rich country. The ... continue reading


Liberian bishop reminds world that the poor must not be forgotten during Ebola crisis Watch

Image of Alluding to Pope Francis's repeated emphasis on mercy and service to the poor, Bishop Borwah said that

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Bishop Anthony Fallah Borwah of Gbarnga in Liberia says that the world that "it is the poor who are the Church's priority." Ebola, which has ravaged this West African nation is chiefly concentrated among those living in poverty. "Whole families are being ... continue reading


Nigerian ceasefire intended to free abducted schoolgirls broken with two attacks by Muslim Jihadists Watch

Image of he recent attacks have squelched hopes for an easing of the Northeast's violence although Nigerian officials are confident they can negotiate the release of schoolgirls.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Boko Haram militants are blamed in two separate attacks on Nigerian villages following a ceasefire intended to free 200 abducted schoolgirls. Suspected insurgents attacked the village of Abadam which led to the death of one person while the second assault on ... continue reading


Hopes for saving the species die with northern white rhino Watch

Image of Suni, the 34-year-old northern white Rhino who was key to potentially keep the species alive, has died of natural causes in Kenya.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Another of the nearly extinct northern white rhino has died in Kenya, leaving just six of these animals in the entire world. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Rangers found the rhino, named Suni, on October 17 in the Ol Pejeta Conservancy, located 150 miles north of ... continue reading


Algerian police engage in widespread protest Watch

Image of Police tried to push their way into the president's headquarters on Wednesday of last week to express that

By Kaci Racelma (Algiers, Algeria)

While security becomes a serious issue in Algeria, especially with the size taken by the Islamic State, a wave of protests began last week by police officers, followed by an orderly march throughout the country is of great concern to citizens. It's the first ... continue reading


A despicable act! Islamists butcher 23 people in Democratic Republic of Congo Watch

Image of The U.N. is calling for renewed military action against insurgents and rebels in the eastern border provinces in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In the town of Beni in the Democratic Republic of Congo, suspected Ugandan rebels are believed to have killed at least 23 people, in their second attack within two days. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The attacks, and calls for assistance from the local ... continue reading


All Africa News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 3:14-21
14 This, then, is what I pray, kneeling before the ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 33:1-2, 4-5, 11-12, 18-19
1 Shout for joy, you upright; praise comes well from ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 12:49-53
49 'I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 23rd, 2014 Image

St. John of Capistrano
October 23: St. John was born at Capistrano, Italy in 1385, the son of a ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter