Friday Morning, May 26th, a group of Coptic Christians Massacred, were on their way to attend service at the Monetary of St. Samuel the Confessor, when the bus they were in was surrounded by 3 SUV’s that immediately opened fire on the bus.
Witnesses say that a group of ten armed men dressed in paramilitary clothing opened fire with automatic weapons, with the death toll now reported at 28. Among the dead, are many women and children. The situation is being treated as an act of terror by President al-Sissi, who ordered retaliatory air strikes against nearby extremist bases in East Libya.
The Coptic Christians may be the oldest of all Christians. While there may be subtle translations, Coptic very simply just translates as Egyptian Christians. The Coptic Church of Alexandria is believed to have started when the Apostle Mark visited Alexandria in 42AD.
At the time, more than 500 years before the birth of Muhammad, Christianity was well received in Egypt and spread quickly. In 639AD when Arab Muslims conquered Egypt, the Islamists considered Christians to be inferiors, and were subject to a special tax called a Jizra. This practice of taxing Christians ended in 1855, however was reinstated in 2013 while the Obama administration was supporting Morsi, and the Muslim Brotherhood.
The Copts, consider themselves to be the persecuted people described in the prophecies of the bible, and have, in fact, been the target of Islamic bigotry against other religions.
In total, it is believed that there are between 10 and 20 million Coptics, however it is very difficult to get a census on them, as they are continuously in hiding. Within the entirety of Egypt, a nation that is heavily majority Muslim, the Coptic’s only make up a total of 10% of the country’s population.
This most recent attack occurs in the wake of two bombings of Coptic churches in Alexandria, the Coptic Christians oldest city. The two church bombings claimed 44 lives.