ASSIUT, Egypt, (AP) – A Coptic Christian priest has been killed in southern Egypt, triggering street demonstrations by several thousand Christians.
The priest was found dead in his home. A fellow clergyman, Danoub Thabet, says his body had several stab wounds. He says neighbors reported seeing several masked men leaving the apartment and shouting “Allahu akbar,” or “God is great,” suggesting the killing was motivated by the divide between Egypt’s Muslims and its minority Coptic community.
About 3,000 protesters scuffled with Muslim shop owners Tuesday night and smashed the windows of a police car in the city, Assiut.
Egypt’s religious tension spiked in January when a suicide bomber killed 21 people outside a Coptic church in the port city of Alexandria. Days of protests followed.