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Egyptian Government Policy of Forced Collective Deportation of Christians

ICC Note:

Forced deportation of Coptic Christians increasing in villages where Copts are targeted by mob attacks.

By Mary Abdelmassih

12/11/2009 Egypt (AINA) – Egypt has witnessed recently an unprecedented upsurge in sectarian violence directed against the indigenous Christian citizens. Whatever sparked the explosive incidents, whether it was rumor or fact about an ‘honour crime’ committed by a Christian male, renovation of an old dilapidated church, a Christian praying with relatives within his own four walls, or even an ordinary fight between two parties; one Muslim and one Christian, results in collective Muslim mob punishment of all the Christians in the region; affecting their homes, businesses, property and even their lives.

Forced deportation of Christians from their villages after Muslim violence against them is also on the increase. Deportation of Copts took place twice in the last five months following sectarian violence, in the village of Meet Barbary, in Meet Ghamr last July and in Kom Ahmar, Farshout on November 21.. The plight of those affected by the forced evictions is great, having to leave behind all what they own, and start anew somewhere strange, without any form of government compensation or aid in relocation. In all incidents they were prevented from ever being repatriated back to their homes.

Collective evacuation of Copts took place on November 21, 2009 in the village of Kom Ahmar after Muslim mobs looted and burnt 80% of the Coptic-owned businesses in the town of Farshout and neighbouring villages, provoked by a rumour that the Copt Guirgis Baroumi allegedly sexually abused a 12-year-old Muslim girl . which is presently still under investigation ,

“These solutions came from the security authorities and under the pretext of protecting Christians from confirmed information they have of forthcoming attacks on them by the Muslims. After their departure Muslims plundered and burnt their homes, their livestock and crops.”

On November 22, in a joint communiqué issued by fourteen Egyptian human rights organizations and lawyers called on President Mubarak to immediately intervene to save the Copts from the wrath of the mob. It also strongly condemned the evacuation of the Copts from Kom Ahmar by the security forces, in violation of the provisions of the Egyptian Constitution which stipulates in Article 50 and 51 “No citizen may be prohibited from residing or be forced to reside in a specific area except in the circumstances set out in the law.”

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