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ICC Note: Coptic Organizations around the world gathered this past weekend to commemorate the ‘Maspero massacre” of 2011 where 27 peaceful Coptic protesters were killed by the Egyptian Army. While events took place in Washington DC and even Canada, Egyptian Copts were not allowed to commemorate their fallen. The Egyptian authorities rejected the request to gather under unexplained ‘security reasons.’ This is a denial to the legal rights of Coptic Egyptians in Egypt.

10/10/2016 Egypt (WWM): Coptic organisations outside Egypt commemorate this weekend the 5th anniversary of an attack by the Egyptian Army against a peaceful Christian protest march, which resulted in 27 Copts killed and scores of others injured. Known as the “Maspero massacre” it mainly took place (on 9 Oct. 2011) outside the huge headquarters of the Egyptian Radio and Television Union (ERTU), the Maspero building.

Plans this week by US-based Coptic Solidarity (CS) include a “Remembrance Day” in Washington DC for the Maspero victims, as well as for victims of attacks against Egyptian Christians dating back to 1971: including riots, church attacks across Egypt, and the ISIS slaughter of 21 men on a beach in Libya in 2015.

In Mississauga, Canada, another group of Copts will keep alive the memory of the dead with participants of their community in the Toronto metropolitan area.

These events held overseas come even as another to remember the Maspero victims at home was turned down by the authorities: a request to hold a vigil was refused due to unexplained “security reasons”, said Copt activists, including Maspero Youth Union (MYU).

“Authorities’ intransigence in rejecting our request for a permit to gather denies us the exercise of our legal rights. It forces us to wait for a lengthy judicial appeal, which, even if granted, would [for] sure be after the anniversary has long passed,” MYU said, noting that some activists have already been threatened.

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