Egyptian Chronicles: The explosion of El-Botroseya Church in Cairo : Terrorism hit the country hard again

Sunday, December 11, 2016

The explosion of El-Botroseya Church in Cairo : Terrorism hit the country hard again

At 10:30 AM a huge explosion that took place near the Egyptian Coptic Cathedral in Heliopolis.
After the end of the Sunday ,an explosion took place in the Small church of St. Peter and St. Paul "El-Botroseya" which is near the complex of the main Coptic Cathedral.

Inside the Church after the explosion
Inside the Church " Bassam Abu Zeid" 
According to the ministry of health ,23 people were killed. The victims are 8 men , 3 children and 12 women. There are currently 50 people injured in hospitals.

The explosion took place in the women and children's section and that's why the victims are mostly women. 

May God bless the souls of the victims.

Officially , President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi declared three days of national mourning. 

Pope Tawadros II , the head of the Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church cut his visit to return back immediately to Egypt. He will head the funeral arranged for the victims tomorrow as far as I know. Strangely the funeral of the victims won't be held at the Saint Marks Cathedral in Cairo but rather another church in Nasr City.

In the afternoon , hundreds of angry Egyptians "Mostly Christians" organized protests outside the Cathedral denouncing what happened and attacking the government and sometimes the regime itself according to their chants.

One of their main demands is the dismissal of the minister of interior. 
Four top Pro-regime TV hosts including an MP were attacked and kicked out of the church by angry people above them Lamis El-Hadidy. 

According to security sources , not less than 12 kg of TNT were used in bombing the church.
No terrorist organized has claimed its responsibility.

Egypt's two main militant Nile valley based group "Liwa Al-Thawra" and "Hasm" distanced themselves officially from the attack denouncing it in two statements. 

This is the biggest terrorist attack against Coptic Egyptians since the Two Saints Church explosion in Alexandria in December 2010.

In fact, the death toll of this attack is higher than Two Saints Church explosion. It is worth to mention that after six years we do not know really who bombed the Two Saints Church explosion. Also in September 2016 , the administrative court ordered the interior ministry to reveal the results of its investigations into the bombing.

Up till, it has not declared anything

Many are drawing similarities between the two bombings : Two Saint Church and El-Botroseya Church. It is not a new level of terror for real as I wrote in the title I am afraid. We have seen it before.

Today marks the Moulid El-Nabawy "Prophet Mohamed {PBUH} birthday" and officially it is a national holiday.

Al-Botroseya Church was built by the Ghali family in Cairo in 1911 over the tomb of Boutros Pasha Ghali , Egypt's former PM "1846-1910".
The Church that was designed by an Italian designer and architect includes the cemetery of the Ghali family up till now.
It is considered among the Coptic antiquities  according to the ministry of antiquities in Cairo. The costs of damages in the explosion reached to LE 80 million according to the early estimation

Live Coverage below for the day.



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5 comments :

  1. Quite a disgusting terrorist attack, looks like it may have been of ISIS origin. In addition to fixing security issues, the overall climate needs to be changed by making an emphasizing on universal citizens' rights a reality. Scaling back or limiting rights or otherwise failing to promote tolerance encourages extremists in the belief that there is some justification for their actions.

    Despite what some people claim, civil society is not the entity that is trying to personally benefit from terrorism. Those who deceitfully argue that activism for liberty and human rights aids terrorism are at the forefront of politicizing these attacks. Those who cheered on the death of Mina Daniel are in no position to accuse anyone else of trying to receiving personal or political gain. Arresting and torturing factory workers and lawyers clearly does not contribute to security.

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  2. What I especially mean about restricting rights bolstering extremists is that doing so creates a climate or environment in which they are more likely to emerge. A serious look needs to be taken at the status and liberties accorded religious minorities and the rights afforded by citizenship in general. It is always bad to have an atmosphere of intolerance and sectarian rhetoric, but it gets worse if such problems are implanted into the state structure. A revolution in religion is very possible if the people who most clearly see the need for change decide to take action. Obviously, those in powerful political, religious, or economic positions will be unlikely to lead this change.

    Requiescat en pace to all who perished.

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  3. Thanks for this sad, interesting report, Z.

    Clearly Egyptians cannot protect their own national treasures. Over and over we see Egyptians burning down buildings full of irreplaceable artifacts. They are immature, or something. They piss in the pyramids.

    Egypt, I beg yet again that you ask the British Museum to keep all your small relics safe until such time as you are able to manage that yourself. Of course not everything is portable. Israel has great skill in guarding building and archeological sites, and I am sure you can hire them to advise or work for you. Good luck!

    Hi Orange Ketchup, it's nice to hear from you again. Regarding "...creates a climate or environment...". It's the old argument that a policy opposing terrorists actually does the opposite. "It's ISIS's best recruiting tool" is what one hears. Well, I am not convinced. "We have to allow them to walk all over us, otherwise they will walk all over us" is what that says.

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    Replies
    1. In this case, I am talking about the government making poisonous concessions to (or already supporting) sectarian sentiment and also enacting measures which superficially seem security-based but in reality are politically motivated. For example, conducting a large number of blasphemy trials does not steal the thunder of extremists; instead, it embolden them to expand their ambitions. Using al-Azar as a political tool to disseminate the regime's view of religion and to attack opponents is another case. Trying to implement some of a demagogue's ideas in the belief that doing so will undercut that demagogue often ends up backfiring. Due to its a combination of its natural inclinations and also to undercut criticism, the Egyptian government has engaged in many of the sectarian policies that extremist forces epouse.

      Another problem is the focus on destroying NGOs and civil society under the mendacious pretext of "security." Doing this wastes police and military resources that could better be expended dealing with real threats. Furthermore, Egyptian prisons have functioned as extremist-generating factories for decades now. There is a way to make use of law-enforcement and prisons in a more rational fashion with fewer side-effects.

      Empirically-backed actions and policies that reduce terrorist threats are legitimate and should be deployed, but misguided policies or ones created in bad faith have not been working so far.

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  4. There are only 3 targeted groups in Egypt, the army, the police and the Christians, let's stop saying all Egyptians are targeted please!!!!

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