The recent burning to death of a Copt in Sinai is only the tip of the iceberg.
(By Raymond Ibrahim, Frontpage Magazine). Yet another murderous wave is taking Egypt’s Coptic Christian minority by storm, leading to yet another exodus from their homes.
Perhaps because of its sensationalist nature—burning a human alive—this story was reported by some Western media. Yet the atrocities hardly begin or end there. Below is a list of Christians murdered in al-Arish in recent days and weeks:
- January 30: A 35-year-old Christian was in his small shop working with his wife and young son when three masked men walked in, opened fire on him, instantly killing the Copt. The murderers then sat around his table, eating chips and drinking soda, while the body lay in a pool of blood before the terrified wife and child.
- February 13: A 57-year-old Christian laborer was shot and killed as he tried to fight off masked men trying to kidnap his young son from off a crowded street in broad daylight. After murdering the father, they seized his young son and took him to an unknown location (where, per precedent, he is likely being tortured, possibly already killed, if a hefty ransom was not already paid).
- February 16: A 45-year-old Christian schoolteacher was moonlighting at his shoe shop with his wife, when masked men walked in the crowded shop and shot him dead.
- February 17: A 40-year-old medical doctor was killed by masked men who, after forcing him to stop his car, opened fire on and killed him. He too leaves a widow and two children.
It is likely that more Christians have been slain recently in Sinai; because they are being killed in quick succession, it is not clear if ongoing reports are documenting the same or new incidences. For instance, a recent February 24 report says “On Thursday [February 23], a [Christian] plumber in the city was shot dead in front of his wife and children at their home…. A day earlier [February 22], gunmen killed another [Christian] man before his pregnant wife, then calmly drank a bottle of Pepsi before taking off, witnesses told aid workers in Ismailia.” Is the February 22 Pepsi drinking incident the same as the one reported above as occurring on January 30, or a different one?
This recent uptick in Christian persecution is believed to be in response to a video earlier released by the Islamic State in Sinai. In it, masked militants promise more attacks on the “worshipers of the cross,” a reference to the Copts of Egypt, whom they also referred to as their “favorite prey” and the “infidels who are empowering the West against Muslim nations.”