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Coptic Christians in Egypt are reeling from a fresh spate of murders, which they fear are part of a jihadist campaign against them.

Three Coptic men were found dead in the space of eight days from the last week of June to the first week of July. A fourth was killed in late May.

The lack of obvious motives and the methods used have led Copts to fear the killings may have been carried out by extremists loyal to groups such as Islamic State (IS), which in February vowed to “wipe out” Egypt’s Copts, though no group or individual has claimed responsibility.

On Sunday 2 July a Christian urologist, Albert Fekry, was found dead in his clinic with a single gash to his neck.

On the same day, in Heliopolis outside Cairo, Coptic jeweller Girgis Bushra, 55, was found dead in his home. He had been shot, according to local police, who have so far made no arrests.

Eight days earlier, a Coptic artist was found dead in the city of Minya, capital of Minya Governorate, which is home to many Copts. Michael Nabil Bebawy, a 32-year-old artist, did not return home after attending Mass. His brother-in-law, Michael Adel, told World Watch Monitor his body had been dumped on railway tracks near the station and his head was found beside his body.

Magdy Zekry Abdel Malak, 40, also suffered a single gash to his neck, when he was killed in May. Police have as yet made no arrests.

A state of emergency in place since attacks on two churches on Palm Sunday has not prevented subsequent attacks against Copts, who complain of a state of indifference among the police.

Fr Bishoy Hakim, a Coptic priest in Minya, alleged there was widespread indifference towards Copts. He told World Watch Monitor: “The security forces are not concerned with protecting Copts. They forge reports and are not bothered with arresting the perpetrators. Extremists are allowed to act with impunity against Copts, which encourages others to repeat such attacks and carry out worse.”

Source: World Watch Monitor

  • Ask the Lord to intervene, to bring justice for the families and protection against further attacks. Ask the Lord to bring an end to this violence.
  • Pray those who are grieving may look to the Lord and be comforted. Pray they will be well supported and cared for.
  • Ask the Lord to bring strength to His church, may they be unified in their love for Him and their identity as God’s children.