A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Muslims Supporting Copts for Christmas

With Eastern Christmas arriving Friday night and Saturday, Coptic Pope Shenouda has invited all Muslim groups to attend services; and given church attacks in Alexandria at New Year's last year, and at Nag Hammadi on Christmas in January 2010, many Muslims are reaching out to Christians, and the Muslim Brotherhood has even offered to protect churches, though the Salafi Al-Nour party doesn't share the sentiment. (In fact, the MB even endorsed a Coptic Parliamentary candidate running against a Nour candidate.)

On New Year's eve, there were marches, including many Muslims, to the Church of Two Saints in Alexandria (bombed a year ago in a still unsolved case) and also a joint Muslim-Christian crowd at the Qasr al-Doubara Anglican church just off Tahrir Square, chanting "Muslims and Christians are one hand."

Except for the Salafis playing Grinch in the whole affair, it's encouraging, but the dangers of radical attacks on Christian churches at Christmas is still very real. A video (in Arabic) about last year's New Year's bombing a year later:


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