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“Egypt’s public prosecutor has referred 48 people for trial at the criminal court for being involved in the deadly sectarian violence that led to the burning of a church in the Cairo district of Imbaba last month,” The Christian Post reports.

By Daniel Blake

6/5/2011 Egypt (Christian Post) – Egypt’s public prosecutor has referred 48 people for trial at the criminal court for being involved in the deadly sectarian violence that led to the burning of a church in the Cairo district of Imbaba last month.

Christians look around Saint Mary Church, which was set on fire during clashes between Muslims and Christians in the heavily populated area of Imbaba in Cairo May 7, 2011. Egypt’s prime minister called an emergency cabinet meeting after 12 people died in bloody clashes.

The accused have been referred to Cairo’s Supreme State Security Court Saturday, for “premeditated murder, harming public security, inciting sectarian tension, burning a church and possessing weapons with the purpose of carrying out terror (acts).”

The deadly incident occurred on May 7, when clashes occurred between Christians and Muslims in Imbaba, a working-class district of Cairo. The fighting saw 12 people killed and dozens more injured, as well as a church set on fire.

The clashes were allegedly sparked by rumors among the Islamic community that Christians had abducted a woman, Abeer Fakhry, whom they claim had converted to Islam.

The prosecutor’s office spokesman, Adel Said, explained that prior to the clashes, a group of Muslims had gathered outside a mosque in Imbaba to incite others to search buildings near a church to find the woman.

[Full Story]