- (REUTERS/Louafi Larbi)
A spokesman for the Egyptian Cabinet warned that terrorism acts may still be committed as celebrations of the Christmas holiday continue.
"It is natural to exploit such holidays to carry out terrorist acts," said Hani Salah, the spokesperson for the Egyptian Cabinet, during an interview with CBC.
He noted that the purpose of these acts is to show the state as incapable of protecting religious installations.
Egypt has witnessed repeated acts of violence by Islamic groups since the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi and the dispersal of the Muslim Brotherhood's sit-ins in Rabaa Adawiya and Nahda squares on Aug. 14. The attacks have targeted churches, Copts, military forces and police stations.
A day after the warning from the Egyptian Cabinet was released police in Assiut discovered a Coptic doctor who was found tied up inside the trunk of a car.
The security directorate of Assiut was notified by the Ghanayim police station, which stated, "During First Lieutenant Hassan El-Nemr's shift, he was surprised to find a truck speeding and thus attempted to stop it."
The men in the truck opened fire and tried to flee, prompting the security officers to shoot out the rear tires of the truck, and then the perpetrators fled the truck and escaped into the desert.
After searching the car, police found Walid Sameh Girgis tied up inside the trunk.
"On my way back home from work, I was driving my car when I was surprised by two unknown men opening fire on me, and forcing me to stop. They tied me up and placed me inside the trunk of the car, and stole 400 pounds and my cell phone," the doctor revealed upon questioning as reported by Mideast Christian News.
There has been no official word regarding the identity of the suspects.