Egypt: Bus full of Coptic Christians attacked near site of 2017 Minya massacre

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack which killed at least 7 people and injured 13 others

A minibus carrying Coptic Christian passengers to a monastery was attacked in Egypt’s Minya governorate, according to reports on Friday, November 2.

The bus was carrying passengers to Sohag from the St. Samuel the Confessor monastery in Upper Egypt when unidentified gunmen opened fire, killing several people, a report from Al-Araby Al-Jadeed said.

The assailants shot at on a second bus and tried to attack a third which managed to drive away, Al Arabiya reported.

There was no immediate confirmation of casualties, but Reuters reported the archbishop as saying that seven people were dead and 14 injured, a number repeated by government officials. The injured were being treated at Sheikh Fadel hospital in Beni Mazar, according to Bishop Makarios.

Most of the victims are members of one family.

The attack occurred near the site of a similar assault in April 2017 that left more than two dozen people dead.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack through its Amaq agency.

On October 11, an Egyptian military court sentenced 17 people to death over a series of suicide attacks on Christian churches in 2016 and 2017.

Coptic Christians make up about 10 percent of Egypt’s predominantly Sunni Muslim population. Christian sites of worship across the country have been repeatedly targeted by Islamic State Sinai Province, prompting authorities to impose a state of emergency 18 months ago.

The Egyptian army is waging a major operation focused on the Sinai aimed at wiping out ISIS.

“I confirm our determination to continue our efforts to combat dark terrorism and apprehend the culprits,” Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said in a Facebook post on Friday.

Egypt court sentences 17 to death over church suicide bombings claimed by ISIS

This story was updated with additional information throughout the day on November 2 and again at 0730 on November 3.

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