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A Coptic Child Abduction
ICC Note:
Stephen Michel Talat Oweida, a 3-year-old Christian child, was kidnapped on Saturday on his way to kindergarten in Egypt.
“Five gunmen ambushed the car… While the family driver was carrying Stephen, four armed men came out of their car and kidnapped the child from the hands of the family driver at gunpoint, then drove away to an unknown destination,” Cairo Now reports. While ICC has not yet be able to confirm if the kidnapping was a persecution case, it is true that Christian children and women are routinely abducted in Egypt because of their vulnerable religious minority status. In such cases, the victim’s Christian family is granted few legal rights and, more often than not, they never see their child again.
10/15/2012 Egypt (Cairo-Now)- In continuation of the series of Copts persecution, intimidation and forced migration from their home towns, an armed gang kidnapped the child Stephen Michel Talat Oweida (three years old); son of a Coptic businessman in the city of Ismailia, Egypt. Stephen was kidnapped on Saturday the thirteenth of October at seven in the morning, Cairo time from front of his family home located at intersection of Twenty & Hospital Streets as he was on his way to Kindergarten school.
Five gunmen ambushed the car, in which Stephen was riding near the family home. While the family driver was carrying Stephen down, four armed men came out of their car and kidnapped the child from the hands of the family driver at gunpoint, then drove away to an unknown destination. The family immediately informed the police and reported the kidnapping which took place as Stephen’s mother was watching him from her balcony on the ninth floor.
Efforts of the Police of Ismailia and their investigation did not lead to locate the child or to identify his captors. It is noteworthy to say that the child”s father was one of the biggest supporters of General Ahmed Shafiq, candidate in recent Egyptian presidential election campaign in Ismailia which raises concern that the abduction has a political dimension and motives besides the religious sectarian dimension, which aims to weaken the Christian minority by terrorizing Copts and forcing them to migration.

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