Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Unrest in Egypt signals danger for Christians

Pray for Egypt today!
As growing unrest in Egypt leaves the country on the brink of revolution, there are fears that radical Islamists may capitalise on the crisis to seize power, signalling danger for the Christian community, reported Barnabas Aid today.

Protests against President Hosni Mubarak's regime have been gathering momentum throughout this week. Off the back of the Tunisian uprising, which resulted in the ousting of President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, there is the mood and momentum for radical change in Egypt.

The unrest gained new impetus when the largest opposition movement, the Muslim Brotherhood, said it would back demonstrations. The banned Islamist group demanded that Mubarak dissolve the nation's recently formed parliament and hold a new election, threatening in a statement on its website that if the Egyptian government "does not move fast and shoulder responsibility to start a serious reform process, stability might not last for long.”

Many commentators have warned of a domino effect from Tunisia across the Arab world, as instability grows in Algeria, Lebanon, Yemen and Jordan. If Egypt is taken over by Islamists, the consequences for the region could be very serious.

“An Islamist Egypt would give dramatic impetus to radical Islam throughout the Arab world,” warned Global intelligence analyst George Friedman of Stratfor. “The transformation of Egypt into an Islamist country would be the single most significant event we could imagine in the Islamic world, beyond an Iranian bomb.”

Barnabas Aid said the protests in Egypt follow targeted attacks against the country's Christians, most notably the suicide bombing at a church in Alexandria on New Year's Day that killed at least 21 worshippers. Egyptian Christians are already second-class citizens in their own country. They suffer severe discrimination in many areas of life, such as in education and employment. If the Muslim Brotherhood were to seize power, they could rapidly be subjected to even more humiliating regulations, designed to exclude and degrade them further.

Please pray for believers in Egypt!

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