Death toll rises in Egypt Christian clashes as tension continues
Egyptian Coptic Christians clash with soldiers and anti-riot police during a protest in Cairo on 9 October.
October 10th, 2011
10:01 AM ET

Death toll rises in Egypt Christian clashes as tension continues

From Mohamed Fadel Fahmy, For CNN

Cairo (CNN) - The number of dead in clashes between the army and pro-Coptic Christian protesters in Egypt over the weekend rose to at least 25, with at least 272 wounded, a Healthy Ministry official told CNN Monday.

But conflicting reports from the two sides indicated the death toll could be as high as 29 in violence that an army spokesman speculated may have been guided by a "hidden hand" associated with neither side.

Many of the dead and injured were crushed by speeding military vehicles, said Dr. Adel al-Dawi of the ministry.

The violence - the deadliest in Egypt since President Hosni Mubarak was toppled by a popular revolution in February - has brought the country back to the tense, violent period before the uprising, Prime Minister Essam Sharaf said Monday.

"Instead of going forward, we found ourselves scrambling for security," Sharaf said on state television in an early morning speech, noting that the incident had produced "martyrs, both civilian and from the military."

Hundreds of Coptic Christians rallied outside a hospital Monday, chanting "The army has its tanks but we have our prayers," CNN saw.

Read the full story here.
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Africa • Belief • Christianity • Coptic • Egypt • Religious violence

soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. Muneef

    Dear your views are the right one's as an example of humanity of mankind towards his fellow men...what is obstructing that is what is called "Obsessions"..to be obsessed with thoughts of fear from others or a sense of superiority over others, what ever the cause might be whether racially or religiously or politically there will always be some prophecies or greeds to race to and fight over... What ever it was that stands on the way of integration and the blending of the races cultures to live in peaceful interfaith together helping each other....what ever is against that is evil that we have to seek refuge in the lord of mankind;
    Sahih International
    Say, "I seek refuge in the Lord of mankind, (114:1).
    The Sovereign of mankind. (114:2).
    The God of mankind, (114:3).
    From the evil of the retreating whisperer -(114:4).
    Who whispers [evil] into the breasts of mankind – (114:5).
    From among the jinn and mankind." (114:6).

    Sahih International
    Say, "I seek refuge in the Lord of daybreak (113:1)
    From the evil of that which He created (113:2).
    And from the evil of darkness when it settles (113:3).
    And from the evil of the blowers in knots (113:4).
    And from the evil of an envier when he envies." (113:5).

    October 14, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
  2. I.Mouris

    The number of dead in clashes between the army and pro-Coptic Christian protesters in Egypt over the weekend rose to at least 25, with at least 272 wounded, ??????
    all the dead they are christian, the Egyptian army killed christian, that is the fact and not because they were crushed by speeding military vehicles, you say speeding like it was accidend, the army meant to run over people, you need to be more specific, Mohamed you didn't watch the video

    October 12, 2011 at 9:36 pm |
  3. Muneef

    Egypt is a secular regime country and religions do not have seats in the Gvt...so what ever was there was due Gvt failure and not by Islamists who were always thrown into prisons for any reason although mainly was for the Gvt to milk the west for funds under the name of fighting terror... Muslims were being used for that although their right of establishing a mosque is as similar to Coptic establishing a church...!!!

    October 11, 2011 at 6:50 pm |
  4. C.Cantu

    The power vacuum created by the ex-tyrants in the Middle East has been filled by Muslim clerics and extremists. Even Israel is sensing the transformation, new Arab governments are becoming hostile, aggressive, more intolerant and trying to diplomatically isolate the state of Israel. I perceive a new cycle of more hatred, resentment, violence, terrorism and discrimination. The Salafists are leading the revolts against Christians, these guys ere the most cruel, intolerant and bloodthirsty. ironically their name "Salafists" translate as the "Most Pious" of all Muslims.

    October 11, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
    • Alexi

      Z1danele0n / @C0mmentar lol. You got me. I'm actually a 7 yearS old kid shdluon't tell you learn how to right and read. When I'm not studying neuroscience or tutoring honors physics, all I do is play video games and hate on people. I live a sad life. The world needs more people like you to examine the comments section of youtube videos and tell people they should not post an opinion if it's a negative one./sarcasm Please, if nothing else- read the 1st sentence of your 1st response again. I'm done.

      October 8, 2012 at 12:45 am |
  5. Kibale

    I am really surprising about the war behind religion. In my opinion, religion needs to be abolished through out the world. People use it for the sake of their own power. I believe in protection and enforcement of human rights issues. Let's forget the ideology of the religion.

    October 11, 2011 at 8:02 am |
    • steveinmo

      Abolish Faith? How do you propose that? So you are really DO only want freedom FROM religion – your decades old lie is showing. Good morning Satan.

      October 11, 2011 at 11:03 am |
  6. sam

    The coptic hold a large portion of the economy – Christians own 33% of Egypt's Wealth. If the big Coptics cared, hold a strike – let the fragile egyptian economy feel the pain. That should be the message the Coptic pope broadcasts. But no, why should rich people suffer – let the kids riot in the streets. That being said, I don't wish to see more people killed over the burning of a church.

    October 10, 2011 at 10:11 pm |
  7. anonymous

    Let them kill Coptic so we can have a reasons to get Egypt like Iraq, Afghanistan, Somali.

    Hey..Muslim...try it...just try it..and give us the reasons to enter Egypt and sweep all Sinai Hamas....

    October 10, 2011 at 9:08 pm |
  8. anonymous

    A Muslim is the patient. Islamism is the disease. The overwhelming majority of Muslims contract the virus of Islamism at an early age when they are most vulnerable. Once this virus takes hold, it either completely destroys the individual’s cognitive immune system’s ability to reject the disease, or makes it most difficult for the person to see the pathology. That’s why the great majority of babies born to Muslim families remain Muslim for life. It is also a fact that a significant percentage of Muslims contract the virulent form of the belief, Islamism. Islamism is jihadist, intolerant of the “other”

    Lying and dissimulation is taqiyya, ordained and practiced by Muhammad, for use by Muslims only when dealing with infidels. Muslims have the patent and copyright on this shameful practice and the non-Muslims have no need for it. You use lies when you aim to deceive, when you are ashamed of something, or when you wish to distort things. Free people have no need for the abhorrent practice. The contents of the Quran that feed Islamism are the proof you need to present to Muslims.

    In short, we have a great country, troubled by numerous challenges.

    Look on Middle East, what is the greatest thing that they have for the world??

    it's only Terror!!
    it's only Womanize Slave!!
    it's only Hatred towards others!!

    And if they all are Islam, then "believe me" they will kill each others in the name of their own tribe!!! Because their mind is trained to not tolerant to "differences"

    October 10, 2011 at 9:03 pm |
  9. Methusalem

    Take a good look. This is what will happen in Europe first and then in US if muslims get even a larger pc of the population. They don't care about democracy–they do what their imams, the Koran, and their family elders tell them to do. All this talk about democracy and tolerance is meaningless to them. Who is really saying that besides outsiders, military leaders who want to keep the US dollars, and youths who are not getting a share of power?

    Copts are hard working church goers who paid the tax to stay Christian and support law and order. They would never take to the streets unless their backs were against the wall. They contribute financially to Egypt. Yet their churches are bombed and burned while the government who takes their money lets it happen because extremism has taken over.

    Watch and learn.

    October 10, 2011 at 8:46 pm |
  10. Muneef

    There is an aim to break the country into independent regions for Muslims, Christians and maybe for Jews as well... So it is up to you Egyptians if you want it as one or broken to pieces...violence only promotes the break down...and remember no matter how good intentioned and peaceful the demonstrations were meant to be...there will always be few of you or out of yours who will turn your plans up side down intentionally or unintentionally that will result in sorrow rather than pride...

    October 10, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
  11. Muneef

    Images of the full Arabian family Tree from time of "Noah" down to Muhammed s.a.w;

    Unfortunately couldn't find equivalent in English...
    As Arab Decedents our ancestors have passed through all beliefs as Pagan,Jews,Christians and Muslims. The Arabian Roots go back to Noah's time...as per the images at the link;


    October 10, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  12. Central Scrutinizer

    My fellow Americans! Take up the cause. Phoock the mormons and christians and Islam, etc. Let truth guide you! We are running out of time. The country and the world is falling apart!! It is up to US!!

    Until such time as an Atheist, an Agnostic, an openly ho-mose-xual person, or any other minority can be seriously considered for political office, particularly the presidency, then I hang my head in shame as an American. Sure, Obama is half black and that is a step. But where are the Asians, Africans, Mexicans, Gays, Atheists, Agnostics and all other minorities? Scr-ew the Christians! Let some intelligent folks move the country forward for a change. The Christian Right are liars, cheats, thieves and charlatans. The Dems just lie to fit in. Americans, let’s take back our country! The time is now! Call out the politicians on their lies. Call out the banks on their thievery. Take Wall Street money away from the politicians. Smart people in Congress, that should be our mantra, Carry on with common sense or we are doo-med. It is up to us to remove them!

    October 10, 2011 at 1:00 pm |
  13. Majed

    Unfortunately, the Coptic still trying to push the government ,,, (For people who doesn't have full information about the situation there and the context wouldn't be able to judge)...
    Coptic thinks that they can let the west involve in the national problems so they can gain more benefits because the coptic church didn't support the revolution against Husny Mubarak, therefore , they felt loosing many chairs inside the government and they think that they can do it by the old way ,,,
    Fortunately , Egypt has many wise people who can handle the situation and my advice to Coptic people : the time of this event has many signs ,,, why it came in this bad time of Egypt ?? What is the benefit of taking the people toward national war ?? You could wait till the new government take the authority from the Army and easily ask the government to approve them ... Don't push the majority and don't be afraid because the majority won't affect your interest ... The Majority in turn should help coptic to achieve their interests

    October 10, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • Reality

      Saving Muslims is quite easy!!!

      The Five Steps To Deprogram 1400 Years of Islamic Myths:
      ( –The Steps take less than two minutes to finish- simply amazing, two minutes to bring peace and rationality to over one billion lost souls- Priceless!!!)

      Are you ready?

      Using "The 77 Branches of Islamic "faith" a collection compiled by Imam Bayhaqi as a starting point. In it, he explains the essential virtues that reflect true "faith" (iman) through related Qur’anic verses and Prophetic sayings." i.e. a nice summary of the Koran and Islamic beliefs.

      The First Five of the 77 Branches:

      "1. Belief in Allah"

      aka as God, Yahweh, Zeus, Jehovah, Mother Nature, etc. should be added to your cleansing neurons.

      "2. To believe that everything other than Allah was non-existent. Thereafter, Allah Most High created these things and subsequently they came into existence."

      Evolution and the Big Bang or the "Gi-b G-nab" (when the universe starts to recycle) are more plausible and the "akas" for Allah should be included if you continue to be a "crea-tionist".

      "3. To believe in the existence of angels."

      A major item for neuron cleansing. Angels/de-vils are the mythical creations of ancient civilizations, e.g. Hitt-ites, to explain/define natural events, contacts with their gods, big birds, sudden winds, protectors during the dark nights, etc. No "pretty/ug-ly wingy thingies" ever visited or talked to Mohammed, Jesus, Mary or Joseph or Joe Smith. Today we would classify angels as f–airies and "tin–ker be-lls". Modern de-vils are classified as the de-mons of the de-mented.

      "4. To believe that all the heavenly books that were sent to the different prophets are true. However, apart from the Quran, all other books are not valid anymore."

      Another major item to delete. There are no books written in the spirit state of Heaven (if there is one) just as there are no angels to write/publish/distribute them. The Koran, OT, NT etc. are simply books written by humans for humans.

      Prophets were invented by ancient scribes typically to keep the un-educated masses in line. Today we call them for-tune tellers.

      Prophecies are also invali-dated by the natural/God/Allah gifts of Free Will and Future.

      "5. To believe that all the prophets are true. However, we are commanded to follow the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him)
      Mohammed spent thirty days "fasting" (the Ramadan legend) in a hot cave before his first contact with Allah aka God etc. via a "pretty wingy thingy". Common sense demands a neuron deletion of #5. #5 is also the major source of Islamic vi-olence i.e. turning Mohammed's "fast, hunger-driven" hallu-cinations into horrible reality for unbelievers.

      Walk these Five Steps and we guarantee a complete recovery from your Islamic ways!!!!

      Unfortunately, there are not many Muslim commentators/readers on this blog so the "two-minute" cure is not getting to those who need it. If you have a Muslim friend, send him a copy and help save the world.

      Analogous steps are available at your request for deprogramming the myths of Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism and Paganism..

      October 10, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
    • .........

      plz hit report abuse to reality post do not waste time

      October 10, 2011 at 8:01 pm |
  14. Colin

    "Hundreds of Coptic Christians rallied outside a hospital Monday, chanting "The army has its tanks but we have our prayers,"
    My money's on the tanks.

    October 10, 2011 at 10:17 am |
    • Joe

      Prayers can raise the dead. Tanks can only kill.

      October 10, 2011 at 10:33 am |
    • J.W

      What if the Christians end up winning this battle? Then what will you say?

      October 10, 2011 at 11:11 am |
    • Joe

      what battle are you talking about? do you think that Christians have weapons and fighting the army? These are the media deliverance that wants everyone to fall in.

      Who fights their own army "who protects them"? doesn't make sense.

      however extremist which are in the army. don't want christians to have rights. don't want us to protest, ultimately donts want Christians to live. wants them dead. thats written in the Quran and they are doing "good deeds" by killing Christians..

      The only battle that Christians are winning is God is on their side.

      October 10, 2011 at 1:06 pm |
    • Peace2All


      " The only battle that Christians are winning is God is on their side. "

      W T F...?

      October 10, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
    • Answer

      This is just a typical bumper sticker retort from you evangelists. Keep dreaming though. You'll eventually realize that you are as hollow as those other typical religions.

      "The only battle that Christians are winning is God is on their side. "

      October 10, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
  15. chad

    "army spokesman speculated may have been guided by a "hidden hand" associated with neither side"

    Or, it could be persecution of Christians by the army..

    October 10, 2011 at 10:06 am |
    • DB

      And the 'hidden hand' set a Church on fire, we need super sleuths to figure 'who' that hidden hand might be. or not , this is happening in a muslim country. hmm...who could it be? the aliens perhaps?

      October 10, 2011 at 10:16 am |
    • Joe

      The hidden hand has been committing so much and doing many more and never been caught. I actually feel bad for the hidden hand. it has been blamed for so many stuff.

      The previous president, Moubarak has blamed the revaluation on the hidden hand.
      The army will blame this same hidden hand.

      The truth is that there is no hidden hand. it's a lame excuse.

      October 10, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.