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Egypt Facts

Score: 76 / 100
Region: Africa
Persecution Type: Islamic Oppression
Persecution Level: Very High
Population: 99,376,000
Christians: 9,521,500
Main Religion: Islam
Government: Presidential Republic
Leader: President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi

Profile of Persecution

Violence 95%
Church Life 65%
National Life 79%
Community Life 64%
Family Life 79%
Private Life 69%

Multi-faceted persecution

In Egypt, Christians suffer from persecution in various ways. In Egyptian society, Islamic culture fuels discrimination and creates an environment causing the state to be reluctant to respect and enforce the fundamental rights of Christians. Though President el-Sisi has publicly expressed his commitment to protecting Christians, his government’s actions and extremist groups’ continued Christian persecution attacks on individuals and churches, leaving Christians feeling insecure and extremely cautious. The state also makes it nearly impossible for believers to get any official recognition of their conversion. Though Egypt has approved applications for more than 500 churches (out of 3,000 filed over the last two years), Christians of all backgrounds still face difficulty in building churches or finding a place to worship together with other believers.

How Christians are suffering

Those with Muslim backgrounds often face enormous pressure from immediate and extended families to renounce their faith and return to Islam. Severe restrictions on building or securing places for worship often prevent Christians from congregating, in addition to hostility and violence toward believers who do gather. Christians, especially women, face discrimination in their workplaces and public spaces. And in recent years, Islamic extremist groups have targeted Christians and churches both individually and en masse in numerous violent and deadly acts of persecution. Specifically, the Islamic State group has publicly vowed to wage war on Christians.

Examples

In December 2017, a gunman opened fire in Cairo at a church and a nearby shop owned by Christians. Eleven people died as a result of the attack.

In July 2018, a mob attacked Christians in a village in Minya, when Muslim residents were angered by a Facebook post they believed to be blasphemous.

Many Christian girls and women have become the victims of sexual harassment, abduction and rape. In just one month (April 2018), at least seven cases of abduction were documented.

In early November 2018, Islamic State militants attacked a bus carrying Coptic Christians from a monastery in Minya, killing eight and injuring more than 13 people.

 

Pray for Egypt

  • Pray with Christians in Egypt who are grieving for loved ones lost in deadly attacks on both individuals and churches. Pray for a spirit of peace in the hearts of believers.
  • Pray with Christians for boldness and passion as they continue to build the church in the face of discrimination, loss and violence.
  • Pray for protection of Egyptian Christian women and young girls who are extremely vulnerable to kidnappings and forced marriages to Muslim men.
  • Pray that God would bring even the leaders of Islamist extremist groups to Christ, that they might be used for His purposes.

Stories from Egypt

March 8, 2019

Hidden Wounds—Christians Say Rape Is ‘Common’ Persecution Method Against Women

Around the world, Increasing numbers of Christian women are doubly vulnerability to persecution—for both their faith and their gender.

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February 15, 2019

Four Years After Mass Beheadings, Families of 21 Martyrs Share Hope of Heaven

Families of the 21 Coptic Christians martyred off the coast of Libya say their faith has grown.

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February 12, 2019

Modern-Day Paul: ‘I Planned to Kill Him; Now I’m Prepared to Die for Jesus’

If the rumor of Mohammed's conversion was true, Mostafa knew he would have to kill his cousin to avenge his…

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