Most prominent terrorist attacks on Copts in Egypt
It is considered one of the most prominent sectarian events against the Copts. It took place in 1972 in Khanka district in Qalioubia, north of Cairo, after some people burned and demolished a building belonging to a Christian society.
Historians say that the first incident occurred on November 6, 1972, when Muslims burned the Bible Society at a time when Christians were performing religious rites.
20 June 1981 – 10 dead in Muslim Christian clashes in Zawaya Hamra. 5 Christians killed and 4 Muslims killed and one unidentified body.
17 November 1981 — Coptic priest Reverend Maximose Guirguis is kidnapped and threatened with death if he does not denounce his Christianity and publicly convert to Islam. He refuses and his throat is cut leaving him bleeding to death.
9 March 1992 — Manshiet Nasser, Dyroot, Upper Egypt. Copt son of a farmer Badr Abdullah Massoud is gunned down after refusing to pay a tax of about $166 to the local leader of Islamic Group. Massoud’s body is then hacked with knives.
4 May 1992 — Villages of Manshia and Weesa in Dyroot, Upper Egypt. After being Manshiet Naser’s Christians for weeks, an Islamic extremist methodically shoots 13 of them to death. Victims included ten farmers and a child tending their fields, a doctor leaving his home for work, and an elementary school teacher giving a class.
13 March 1997 — Muslim mob attacks a Tourist Train with Spanish Tourists, killing 13 Christians and injuring 6, in the Village of Nakhla near Nagge Hammadi.
During this time terrorists increased the frequency of their attacks and widened it to include those whom they viewed as collaborators with the security force, launching an attack on the eve of the Adha Eid using automatic weapons killing Copts as well as Muslims.
1997 — Abu Qurqas. Three masked gunmen entered St. George Church in Abu Qurqas and shot dead eight Copts at a weekly youth group meeting. As the attackers fled, they gunned down a Christian farmer watering his fields.
January 2000 — 20 Christians killed in rioting in the village of Al Kosheh
Al Kosheh is a predominantly Christian Village in southern Egypt. After a Muslim customer and a Christian shoe-store owner fall into an argument, three days of rioting and street fighting erupt leaving 20 Christians, (including four children) and one Muslim dead. However the killings were not committed in the village of Al Kosheh only in surrounding villages of Al Kosheh where Muslims are the majority. In the aftermath 38 Muslim defendants are charged with murder and possession of guns in connection with the deaths of the 20 Copts. But all are acquitted of murder charges, and only four are convicted of any (lesser) charges, with the longest sentence given being 10 years.” After protest by the Coptic Pope Shenouda the government granted a new trial.
February and April 2001 — International Christian Concern reports that in February 2001, radical Islamists burned a church and 35 Christian homes in Egypt. April 2001 a 14-year-old Egyptian Christian girl was kidnapped because her parents were believed to be harboring a convert from Islam to Christianity.
19 April 2009 — A group of Muslims (Mahmoud Hussein Mohamed (26 years old), Mohamed Abdel Kader (32 years old), Ramadan Fawzy Mohamed (24 years old), Ahmed Mohamed Saeed (16 years old), and Abu Bakr Mohamed Saeed ) open fire at Christians on Easter’s Eve killing two (Hedra Adib (22 years old), and Amir Estafanos (26 years old)) and injuring another (Mina Samir (25 years old)). This event was in Hegaza village, Koos city. On February 22, 2010, they were sentenced to 25 years of jail.
7 January 2010 — six Christians killed in attack on Christmas celebration in Nag Hammadi.
Machine gun attack by three Muslims from a Berber tribe called Al-Hawara on Coptic Christians celebrating Christmas. Seven are killed (including a Muslim officer who was on service).
1 January 2011 (On New Year’s Eve) — 21 Christians killed in bombing in Alexandria.
A car bomb exploded in front of an Alexandria Coptic Orthodox Church killing at least 21 and injuring at least 79. The incident happened a few minutes after midnight as Christians were leaving a New Year’s Eve Church service.
11 January 2011 — A mentally deranged member of the police force opened fire randomly in a train in Samalout station in Minya province resulting in the death of a 71-year-old Coptic Christian man and injuring of 5 others Copts and Muslims.
5 March 2011 — A church was set on fire in Sole, Egypt by a group of Muslim men angry that a Muslim woman was romantically involved with a Christian man. Large groups of Copts then proceeded to hold major protests stopping traffic for hours in vital areas of Cairo.
April 2011 — After the death of two Muslims on April 18, sectarian violence broke out in the southern Egyptian town of Abu Qurqas El Balad, in Minya Governorate, 260 km south of Cairo. One Christian Copt was killed. Coptic homes, shops, businesses, fields and livestock were plundered and torched.
7 May 2011 — the burning of 3 Coptic Orthodox churches, and the destruction of many Christian-owned houses and businesses. In addition, 15 people were killed in the attacks, and about 232 injured.
A dispute started over claims that several women who converted to Islam had been abducted by the church and was being held against her will in St. Mary Church of Imbaba, Giza, ended in violent clashes that left 15 dead, among whom were Muslims and Christians, and roughly 55 injured. Eyewitnesses confirmed the church was burnt by salafists who are not from the neighborhood, by the committee of the National Council for Human Rights (NCHR). Copts converting to Islam are usually advised by the police to take out restraining orders against their families as the Coptic community does not tolerate converts to Islam. These incidents have fueled strife and problems between Copts and Muslims as in the famous case of Camelia.
May 2011 — Copts in Maspero, Cairo are attacked during protests 23 coptic Christian were killed by the Egyptian army and the Islamic mob.
18 May 2011 — The Coptic Church obtained a permission in January to turn a garment factory bought by the church in 2006, into a church in the neighbourhood of Ain Shams of Cairo. However, angry Muslim mobs attacked the church and scores of Copts and Muslims were arrested for the disturbance. On Sunday May 29, an Egyptian Military Court sentenced two Coptic Christians to five years in jail each for violence and for trying to turn a factory into an unlicensed church.
9 October 2011 — The worst sectarian violence occurred in 2011, when the army killed at least 24 Christians in what became known as the “Maspero massacre”.
Thousands of Coptic Christians took to the streets in Cairo to protest the burning of a church in Marinab and were headed towards Maspiro, where they were met with armoured personnel carrier, APCs, and hundreds of riot police and special forces. Army vehicles charged at the protesters and reports of at least 6 protesters being crushed under APCs, including one with a crushed skull, has emerged. In addition, witnesses have confirmed that military personnel were seen firing live ammunition into the protesters, while the Health Ministry confirmed that at least 20 protesters have undergone surgery for bullet wounds. In total, an estimated 24 Copts were killed, while numbers as high as 36 and 50 were reported, including unconfirmed reports of the death of several soldiers.
The events came against the backdrop of tensions simmering due to the violent military breakup of a sit-in staged at Maspiro by Coptic demonstrators a few days earlier to protest the burning of the church of Marinab in the Governorate of Aswan by the Salafis of the region.
18 September 2012 — A Coptic Christian schoolteacher was sentenced to jail for six years because he posted cartoons on Facebook which were allegedly defamatory to Islam and Mohammed, and also insulted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi. Al-Jamaa Al-Islamiya members and Salafist groups attempted to attack Kamel as he was led out of court, and rocks were thrown at the police car used to take him away from the court. However, the schoolteacher denied posting the cartoons and said that his account was hacked.
7, 8 April 2013 — At least three killed after police and armed groups besiege Coptic cathedral in Cairo following the funeral of four Copts killed earlier in sectarian clashes.
Following the funeral at the seat of the Coptic church in Cairo, St. Mark’s Cathedral for four Christians killed in sectarian clashes 6 April 2013, young Copts leaving the funeral service chanted slogans against President Mohamed Mursi and his Muslim Brotherhood movement. Police attacked mourners with tear gas as they tried to leave Egypt’s largest cathedral, forcing them back inside the cathedral precinct and sparking a siege that lasted all afternoon and stretched into the night. Police and armed civilians have laid siege to killing three people and injuring at least 21 Copts and Muslims.
Police fired teargas over the cathedral walls and stood by as unknown men armed with birdshot, knives and petrol bombs scaled nearby buildings to try to attack those inside the church grounds. They were confronted by young group of Copts attempting to defend the mourners inside the Church by exchanging petrol bombs and rocks with Islamic extremists on opposite side of the Church entrance.
According to the The Guardian, four Christians and one Muslim were killed in sectarian clashes that broke out north of Cairo after children allegedly drew a swastika on Islamic property. On Sunday Christians gathered in Cairo to remember the dead in a service that ended by further escalating sectarian tensions resulting in two Christians and one Muslim being killed. Local news reports that the sixth Coptic victim who has died was set on fire during the clashes died in hospital a few days later, while according to other media sources the second Muslim victim died from a fractured skull. Doctors and Interior Ministry officials said bullet wounds accounted for most of the deaths, including that of Mina Daniel, a young political activist a doctor said had been shot in the shoulder and leg.
Christians complained revolution, and the first time the Cathedral had been attacked.
July 2013 – Muslim Brotherhood supporters burn dozens of churches.
Following the July 3 coup d’état against President Mohamed Morsi — a member of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood — Muslim Brotherhood supporters burn dozens of churches throughout Egypt. (Pope Tawadros has supported coup leader and now president Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, whom he once called a “saviour”.)
February 2016 — three Christian teenagers in Minya are sentenced to five years in prison for insulting Islam. They had appeared in a video, allegedly mocking Muslim prayers, but claimed they had been mocking IS following a number of beheadings by that group.
19 May 2016, a prominent Coptic worker for Amnesty International, Mina Thabet, was arrested for ‘inciting terrorist attacks on police stations’, despite reports of paltry evidence. He had been working on evidence of extensive minority persecution under Al-Sisi’s regime. One source also reported that during Al-Sisi’s rule, 250 other human rights activist have been arrested by the National Security Agency on similar charges, including a leading human rights lawyer, members of a street theatre group, two dissident journalists, and 238 people protesting peacefully. Numerous others have reportedly been harassed or had their assets either frozen or confiscated.
26 May — a 70-year-old Christian woman in Minya, is beaten and dragged through the streets naked by a mob who suspect her son of having a sexual relationship with a Muslim woman.
In December 2016, the Botroseya Church bombing killed 29 people and injured 47 others.
February 2017, terrorist groups fighting in the Sinai insurgency call for attacks on Christians. At least seven Christians are killed in separate attacks in city of El Arish in Sinai. Many Coptic families respond by fleeing from the Sinai to Ismailia Governorate.
9 April 2017 — Bombings of two Coptic churches kill over 45 people and injures over 130. St George’s Coptic Orthodox Church in the Tanta region and St Mark’s Church in Alexandria were bombed during Palm Sunday processions.
Bombing St. George church in Tanta ا 2017
7 May 2017 – A Christian man has been shot dead by Islamic State militants in Arish.
26 May – 2017 Minya attack
Opened fire on Coptic trip bus heading to St. Samuel the confessor monastery killing 29 person including children