Coptic Christianity practised in Egypt, a country that is home to one of the earliest Christian churches centuries, before the arrival of Islam and forms about 15% of the country’s population has been under pressure as sectarian violence continues to spark worries.
The murder of a Coptic Christian in Minya by a Muslim, some 200 miles south of Cairo, has sparked worries of sectarian violence spreading across Egypt, where the Coptic Christians form between 13% and 15% of the country’s population.
The incident, in which Coptic Milad Farag was stabbed to death by Khamis Eid, followed an argument that turned violent, residents said, adding that it was not related to sectarianism. Farag’s family expressed its faith in the country’s legal system, saying “justice will be done.”
However, over the past month, outbursts of Christian/Muslim violence have raised fears that Egypt could be heading for a sectarian war.
A Coptic store owner and three employees were recently gunned down in a Cairo neighborhood for no apparent reason.
“I am scared,” one local citizen said on the condition of anonymity. “I don’t know why these people were killed, but with what is going on in the country, it seems religion is causing a lot of violence.”
Analysts have warned that a Lebanon type of situation could erupt if the leaders of both religions do not move fast to calm frayed nerves.