Sudanese minister: Egypt’s Islamists should study Sudanese Muslim-Christian relations

Sudanese Foreign Minister Ali Karti has called on Islamists in Egypt to study relations between Muslims and Christians in Sudan as it provides a good example for coexistence between Islam and other religions.

Karti, who was speaking in Cairo on the occasion of Sudanese Independence Day, said, “Religious coexistence in Sudan is a case study and an example to follow.”

Sudan is a country with deep religious and ethnic divisions. A devastating war between the predominantly Muslim northern region and the southern region, where the majority of the population follows indigenous religions or Christianity, lasted for more than two decades. The war led to the secession of the south and the establishment of the state of South Sudan.

Karti said, ”Our problem in Sudan is not with Christians but rather with Crusaders. The Crusades is a political idea that wants to use the church to practice colonialism.”

Throughout history, Sudan has received waves of migration from Egypt. A large Coptic community with Egyptian roots was established in Sudan.

“The Copts didn’t suffer in Sudan. We respected them. The relations between Muslims and Copts in Sudan is an example that we can introduce to the world,” said Karti. 

Coptic churches in Sudan, unlike Egypt, are not usually guarded by security fources. Moreover, it’s hard to document any attacks against Coptic churches in Egypt’s southern neighbor.

Copts make up around 10 percent of Egypts population of 80 million people. The Coptic population faces discrimination and sometimes attacks against their churches and homes.

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