Persecution of Christians in Egypt: in this case, the attacker demanded that this Christian family not sit outside, claiming that no Christians were allowed outside. This gives the strong impression that the attacker was simply deranged; however, his attack reflects the threat with which Christians in Egypt always live. Many Christians suffer from ongoing harassment, and there are sporadic violent outbreaks.

Coptic Christians make up roughly 10 percent of the Egyptian population. They have been the target of revenge attacks by Muslim mobs ever since Egypt’s first Islamist president Mohamed Morsi was overthrown in a military coup in 2013. Over 40 Christian churches all over Egypt were gutted by arson and looted – some over a thousand years old and full of priceless relics — in the months after Morsi was toppled. Copts have also been murdered in ongoing sectarian violence. And as this story demonstrates, individual Christians are sometimes targeted as well.

For previous coverage of the persecution of Christians in Egypt, see here.

“Coptic Christian Family Attacked in Upper Egypt; Adult Son in Intensive Care,” Morning Star News, November 19, 2019:

CAIRO, Egypt (Morning Star News) – A Coptic Christian is in critical condition after he, his mother and brother were stabbed in Egypt on Sunday night (Nov. 17), according to media reports.

The Muslim assailant in a village in Upper Egypt’s Minya Governorate first told them that Christians must not sit outside before attacking them, leaving the adult son in critical condition at a hospital’s Intensive Care Unit with several wounds to the stomach, according to media reports.

Area residents told Egyptian news media that a non-Christian with a criminal reputation assaulted the family members with a dagger at about 10:30 p.m. after arguing with them as they sat in front of their house in Nassiriya village, near Beni Mazar. Beni Mazar is 219 kilometers (136 miles) south of Cairo on the west bank of the Nile River.

The residents said the argument started when the assailant, identified only as Ali M., walked by the family members as they sat in front of their house and began shouting for them to go back in, saying no Christians were allowed outside. A Facebook post identified the assailant as a Muslim named Ali Eid Morsi; the post has since been removed.

When the adult son, identified as Shinoda Aziz, objected and stood up to the assailant, the suspect retrieved a dagger from his home, returned and attacked him, according to the area residents. When his mother started screaming, the assailant started stabbing her in the head   and also attacked the younger son, cutting his face, they said…

The family reportedly told police the assailant intended to kill them…

Egypt ranked 16th on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2019 World Watch List of countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian.