They were the owners of the household appliances shop. Friday’s first attack appears to have taken place when police patrolling the Mar Mina church noticed two men behaving suspiciously. The men began firing when police approached. An assailant was killed. He had an explosives belt, probably in intention to continue attack. The other gunman escaped but was reportedly later arrested with weapons, ammunition and a bomb.
Image from the church area after attack
Egypt’s Copts have in the past accused authorities of only token gestures to protect them. The attacks have been blamed on, and in many cases claimed by, Islamists affiliated with Islamic State (IS). Egyptian Christians are leaving in fear for the future. Security forces are however on guard around the capital. They have put checkpoints in place around the capital in response to the attacks. “The President of the Republic extended his condolences to the families of the martyrs of this despicable terrorist attack, which targeted a holy place during days where the Christian sons of the nation are celebrating Christmas holidays,” a statement of President Fattah al-Sisi said.