Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Christians in the Middle East live in fear of attack as extremists take charge of the Arab Spring

Countless Coptic Christian Communities in the Middle East are nervous due to the growing religious tensions, especially now that the Sunni Islamists are on the rise. This situation is getting worse by the day due to the collapse of the security forces and the emergence of extremist fringe elements on the political scene. To complicate the issue further, the Christian minorities are often perceived to have sided with oppressive regimes, fearful of the waxing strength of political Islam. The unfortunate factor is that due to this worry, many have already fled Egypt and the whole region, moving to Western countries. 

Anti-Christian sentiment had been rife for years under the toppled regime of President Mubarak, that restricted the number of churches built and also permitting discrimination in the workplace. However, since Mohammed Morsi, from the Muslim Brotherhood, became President the situation has got worse. In Syria, Christians are advised by the heads of the churches to not interfere in the political life and boycott the elections.  

Its important to identify that the Christians living in the Middle East are not foreigners in these countries, but natives. The only thing that distinguishes the various communities is not language, culture or origin, but religion. It is sad that even today these countries live in a constant "civil war" with religion in its epicentre. Let us hope that one day this issue will not be a problem for the millions of Christians who live in that region. 

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