CAIRO (BP) -- It's ugly for Christians in Cairo right now, deeply unsettling even to those who have weathered the ups and downs of the Arab Spring, said Hal Greaves*.
Another church was burned by a mob. Coptic Christians, fed up with being targeted, announced a peaceful protest for religious freedom Oct. 9. The Egyptian military intervened, things escalated quickly and more than 20 were left dead, with hundreds more injured, international news outlets say.
"The Christians I have talked to are afraid and want to leave...There is a lot of fear in the Christian community."
--Christian worker in Egypt
Eyewitnesses reported seeing mangled bodies and body parts run over by military vehicles in the fray, but the Egyptian military denies driving into the crowds and opening fire on them, according to BBC news.
Sources differ on who's to blame. But many report this -- it's the worst violence in Egypt since President Hosni Mubarak was ousted in February, and possibly the worst violence toward Christians there in modern history.
"Needless to say, Egypt is still in development and even in crisis. The events of the Christian march has firmly put Egypt on the list of countries with poor religious freedom," said Ron Robinson*, a Christian worker who has spent time in Egypt.
The unrest and violence has been growing over time as the nation's leadership remains unresolved, he said. Christians are tense, wondering who is behind the attacks and who will have power when all is said and done -- a secular government, or an Islamist one? Read More