Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

FOCUS

Israel's minorities and military service

Read more

DEBATE

Libya unrest: National Assembly asks for UN help to dissolve militias

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan's Political Turmoil: Can Imran Khan's PTI Party Depose the Government? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan's Political Turmoil: Can Imran Khan's PTI Party Depose the Government?

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

#IceBucketChallenge and hashtag activism

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

A bellwether for what not to do

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'The world’s dictators love the unrest in Ferguson'

Read more

ENCORE!

Montreal Stories

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

More than half of French households will pay no income tax this year

Read more

  • Brutal IS beheading video sparks social media pushback

    Read more

  • Ex-PM Juppé announces bid for 2017 French presidential race

    Read more

  • A new view on Normandy landings, 70 years on

    Read more

  • Dozens killed as landslides strike Japan’s Hiroshima

    Read more

  • Deadly airstrikes hit Gaza as ceasefire with Israel collapses

    Read more

  • Tentative peace in Ferguson despite second fatal shooting

    Read more

  • Suspected Ebola cases in Austria, new drug raises hopes

    Read more

  • WWII anniversary highlights best - and worst - of Paris police

    Read more

  • Headscarf at the beach sparks French MEP’s fury

    Read more

  • Iraqi army clashes with militants in Tikrit after retaking key dam

    Read more

  • Video: Life in under-siege Donetsk

    Read more

  • Racism, riots and police violence: USA under scrutiny

    Read more

  • ‘Let it be’: Londoners sick of Abbey Road tourists

    Read more

Africa

Tahrir Square masses rally for unity, order

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-05-13

Thousands rallied in Cairo’s Tahrir Square on Friday, waving flags, calling for national unity and demanding the law be enforced after last Saturday’s attacks on two Coptic churches resulted in deadly sectarian clashes.

AFP - Thousands of people rallied in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday calling for unity and the rule of law to be enforced after attacks on churches, state television reported.

Footage aired from the iconic square, the epicentre of protests that overthrew president Hosni Mubarak in February, showed thousands of protesters waving flags and banners in support of national unity.

Fifteen people were killed in clashes on Saturday after Muslims surrounded a church in Cairo demanding the handover of a woman they said Christians had detained after she converted to Islam and married a Muslim.

The Muslims also set fire to a second church.

The unrest threatened to drive Egypt's often tense religious tensions to the brink, prompting the military to arrest more than 200 people it said will swiftly be tried.

Activists had called for a mass show of unity on Friday, which has become a traditional day of protest after the weekly Muslim prayers at noon.

The protesters gathered in the square ahead of the prayers also waved Palestinian flags.

Activists have called for a march to neighbouring Gaza at the weekend, coinciding with the anniversary of Israel's establishment, to protest the Israeli occupation.

The interior ministry has urged them to cancel the march.

The young Egyptian woman whose complicated love life led to last weekend's clashes was arrested on Thursday and charged with marrying more than one husband, a judicial source said.

Abeer Talaat Fakhry, 26, was living with her Christian husband in the southern city of Assiut when she ran away from home, converted to Islam and informally married Muslim Yassin Thabet.

Copts account for up to 10 percent of the country's 80 million people. They complain of discrimination, and have been the targets of fairly regular sectarian attacks.

The most recent violence has been blamed on a hardline Islamist sect, the Salafists, who have regularly staged protests demanding the church release women they believe converted to Islam.

The sect was mostly apolitical under Mubarak, but since February it has grown more assertive and its leaders say they will form parties to contest a parliamentary election in September.
 

Date created : 2011-05-13

  • EGYPT

    Anti-Christian violence sparks fears of rising Salafi influence

    Read more

  • EGYPT

    Egypt gets tough on security in wake of sectarian violence

    Read more

  • EGYPT

    Crisis meeting called after sectarian violence in Cairo

    Read more

COMMENT(S)