Condemning the New Years Day Attack on a Coptic Church in Egypt
I rise today to condemn the senseless and heinous attack that took place on New Year’s Day in Alexandria, Egypt during a Coptic Christian mass ushering in the New Year. The suicide bombing that took place 20 minutes into 2011 took the lives of 23 Christians and wounded more than 90 others.
Although no one has claimed responsibility for the attack, the Egyptian government has linked the al-Qaeda terrorist organization to this brutal attack. Whoever the perpetrators may be, their actions epitomize the definition of evil and remind us of the constant struggle around the world against terrorism.
Security must remain a priority in Egypt and all freedom fighting nations, and should be prioritized for those disenfranchised and targeted populations. These events have illuminated the unprecedented prejudice facing this minority population and the evident inter-religious struggle and violence that is plaguing Egypt.
This deplorable act of violence is yet another example of the escalation of violence against Egypt’s Coptic Christians, who make up about 10 percent of the population. I offer my condolences to the families of victims who perished in the bombing and hope the Egyptian government honors their promises on the swift and thorough investigation of these vicious crimes.
I yield back.