Copts protest over Helwan church torching

Hundreds of Copts today demonstrated in front of the Egyptian Television building to protest the torching of a church in the village of Sol in Atfeeh, south of Cairo.

The protesters raised banners that condemned the lack of security and called on Hussein Tantawi, the head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, to intervene for their protection.

Priests from Sol took part to reaffirm their right to protection like all Egyptians.

The protesters called for the dismissal of the governor of Helwan–the governorate in which the incident took place–and accused him of laxity for failing to protect the church. They also called for compensation for those harmed and the restoration of the church at the expense of the state.

Two men have been killed during clashes between Muslims and Christians, which culminated in Muslims setting fire to the Shaidain church in Sol, a security official said on Saturday. The violence was triggered by a feud between families, which disapproved of a romantic relationship between a Christian man and a Muslim woman.

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