By Steve Dellar  |  12-29-2017   News
Photo credit: Twitter @AlArabiya_Eng

The ongoing fight between ISIS and the Egyptian military took another turn for the worst this morning when gunmen tried to storm a Christian Coptic church in Helwan, just south of the capital Cairo, killing fifteen people. One of the attackers was afterward shot by police forces whilst the other escaped on a motorbike.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">This is absolutely devastating. At least 15 dead and many injured after gunmen opened fire on Coptic Church “Marmina”, Helwan (Southern Cairo). All my thoughts and prayers go out to all victims of this senseless tragedy and their families. Terrorism has no religion. <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#</a> <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; BASH (@XIBASH) <a href="">December 29, 2017</a></blockquote>

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The Egyptian interior ministry released a statement shortly after the events: "The security forces stopped an attack on a church in Mar Mina in the Helwan district."

According to local media, three police officers were killed in the attack.

Egyptian social media was quickly filling up with a video of one of the attackers lying deadly wounded in the street, still wearing a bomb jacket which he was unable to explode.

<blockquote class="twitter-video" data-lang="en"><p lang="fr" dir="ltr"><a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Egypte</a><br>Au moins 5 personnes ont été tuées après qu&#39;un tireur ait ouvert le feu sur une église <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Copte</a> dans la ville de <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Helwan</a> au sud du <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Caire</a> <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Video</a> du <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#terroriste</a> neutralisé portant un gilet explosif à confirmer<br>⚠️ Pourrai heurter des personnes sensibles. ⚠️<a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Egypt</a> <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Cairo</a> <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; Rebecca Rambar (@RebeccaRambar) <a href="">December 29, 2017</a></blockquote>

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Coptic Christian churches are a preferred target for ISIS in Egypt.

Whilst celebrating Palm Sunday this year, at least 43 people were killed in twin bombings in Coptic churches in the cities of Alexandria and Tanta. And in May many children were among the 28 people killed when gunmen opened fire on a bus traveling to a Coptic monastery in the province of Minya.

Although Egypt is mostly a Muslim country, the Christians, most of the Coptic, makeup around 10% of the population and are a preferred target for Islamist extremists.

ISIS, who were already celebrating the attack on social media messaging site ‘telegram’ regard them as "infidels" helping the West wage war on Muslims.


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Anonymous No. 14863 1514552430

Thoughts and prayers to the victims.

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