23 deaths and nearly 50 injured during inauguration after a bomb explosion in a church in Cairo.
The attack is the biggest on the Coptic Christian community in recent years. It is believed to be a suicide bombing by 22-year-old Mahmoud Shafik as stated by the president today.
A state of mourning was officially introduced in the country for the next 3 days and president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi stated in a speech after the attacks “Terrorism targets the country’s Copts and Muslims… Egypt will only be made stronger and more united in such circumstances.” He also promised that everyone involved in this attack will be found and put on trial and an investigation is already in process.
Marina Barsoum an Egyptian Coptic Christian living in London told Westminster world “what happened was a shock for all Egyptians not only Coptics but at least an investigation was opened and we may actually know who is behind the attacks unlike the previous attack in 2010.” She also added “Egyptians have to admit that they are fighting terrorism not only in Sinai but all around the country so security must be tighter all over the country.”
Earlier today an official military funeral was held for the victims. Leading the funeral were pope Tawadros President Sisi and Prime minister Sherif Ismail. The funeral was limited to family members of the victims alongside invited political and religious figures of the country.
Police forces have captured 3 men and a woman as suspects in the case while still looking for 2 more. Other steps are being taken by the police to keep churches safer, earlier today they introduced a new 200-meter gap between any church’s fence and the road where no vehicles are allowed to stop.
Russian president Vladimer Putin, French president Francois Holland and Secretary of State John Kerry were among world leaders that condemned the attacks and showed support to the Egyptian government in its war against terrorism.
The Egyptian army and police are involved in fighting terrorism in the Sinai Peninsula since the ousting of president Mohamed Morsy in 2013.