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ICC Note: Hostility towards Egyptian Christians in the past few months has been at an all-time high. In a horrific attack this past week, two Christian pharmacies were attacked as well as some on the street. The victims of the stabbings were all Christians. A suspect has since been arrested and it appears that charges will be brought against him. The defendant appears to be preparing an insanity defense, that looks like many as simply a cover-up to hide the real motives behind the attack of these Christian women.
02/21/2014 Egypt (World Watch Monitor) – An Egyptian pharmacist has been arrested in connection with the stabbing death of a Christian woman earlier this month.
In a country where anti-Christian violence is a daily occurrence, the death of Madeleine Wagih on Feb. 8 was not widely reported. It received brief mention in one of the more lurid corners of Egyptian online news. It was one act of violence among the many that have followed the military’s removal of former President Mohamed Morsi last summer.
Since August’s deadly clashes between pro-Morsi demonstrators and army, scores of churches have been ransacked. Kidnappings have become epidemic; Christian doctors and pharmacists are favoured targets. Christians generally are seen as having access to money, and for being supporters of the military takeover that drove the Muslim Brotherhood underground. Though the military-run interim government has outlawed the Brotherhood and rounded up its leaders, Egypt’s Christian leaders complain security forces do not show the same determination to track down the arsonists, kidnappers and killers who have lashed out at Christians and their churches.
In the case of the Madeleine Wagih’s death, the man in custody, Mahmoud Mohamed Ali Hamid, appears to be preparing to plead insanity.
Where Christian victims are concerned, that, too, is common.
On the evening of Feb. 8, Wagih was working alone in Mahaba Pharmacy in Kom Ombo, a Nile River city of about 60,000 people in southern Egypt, famous for its ancient temple ruins, and about 270 kilometres north of the Sudan border. The pharmacy is owned by Semaan Fawzi Eskanda, a Christian.
A man charged into the shop, brandishing a pocketknife. He stabbed Wagih in the throat, severing an artery. She bled to death quickly, said Rev. Rofael Rizk, a Coptic Orthodox priest in Kom Ombo.
Madeleine Wagih was 35.
Outside, passing by the pharmacy, was Marian Kamal Shafik. The attacker burst out of the pharmacy, and stabbed the 18-year-old in her back, near her shoulder. He yelled “You Christians deserve more than that!” then jumped into a waiting car and sped away, Rizk told World Watch Monitor.
He said Shafik was treated at the Kom Ombo hospital and released.
Mahaba Pharmacy was the second target of the evening. Only minutes before, a few hundred metres up the street, the same attacker had entered another pharmacy, also owned by a Christian, Michael Abadeer. This time, however, there were several employees on duty, as well as neighbours who rushed to their aid, and they were able to turn the man with the knife back out into the street and into his waiting car, Rizk said.
The funeral for Wagih was held the next evening, Feb. 9, at Mar Girgis (St. George) Church in Kom Ombo.

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