//As an Egyptian – As a Muslim

As an Egyptian – As a Muslim

As you kneel in prayer you do not expect to be splayed with bullets and blown up. For the anti-Islam people out there – is this enough proof for you?

Three hundred and five people are dead, and one hundred and twenty-eight lie in a hospital recovering from wounds that are not only physical, but emotional as well. Every man, woman, child, and even terrorist were Muslims. To open fire on a group of people so vulnerable in a community space is truly a horrid act.

Recently in Cairo, Egypt, three hundred and five people were killed, and one hundred and twenty-eight were injured in a mosque. Nothing has happened in Egypt on this scale before, with hundreds of lives lost. Men, women, and children of faith gathered at this mosque to pray the holy Friday prayer that is equivalent to Sunday services in Christian religions. ISIS militants infiltrated the mosque during prayer by throwing an explosive into the crowd of people. They then began to shoot random bullets into the crowd.

This is not the only tragedy to have hit Egypt this past year. In January, gunmen drove a large truck into a police checkpoint in the Sinai Peninsula, killing nine people. As violence escalates in Egypt due to insurgencies and government, journalists and other media personnel have been targeted by insurgent groups.

More unrest was created in March when former dictator Hosni Mubarak was released from jail after being held there for the corruption and abuse that occurred during his reign. President Trump showed support for the current Egyptian president, Abdel Fatteh el-Sisi when he came to the U.S. visit in April of this year. Civil unrest in Egypt is partly due to the authoritarian “democratic” rule in Egypt.

After the aforementioned attack, there came the largely publicized suicide bombings of two Coptic churches in Tanta on Palm Sunday. There were forty-four casualties, all lives taken by ISIS. Following this deadly attack, a three-month state of emergency was declared in Egypt by the President.

Not only violence, but intolerance has afflicted Egypt this year. Seven people were arrested at a concert for waving LGBTQ+ flags. Conservatism is as prevalent in Egypt as it is in the U.S., and again brought to light the lack of social freedoms in Egypt. This contributes to Egypt’s ongoing history with limiting the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. Amongst violence, intolerance, and terrorism, 2017 has been a difficult year for Egypt.

However, there are countless instances of Egyptians banding together to fight the growing divides in their country. A surge of nationalism, and humanitarianism has also rippled across Egypt. For now, we can hope for better times.

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Quratulain Malik

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