- (Photo: Reuters/Amr Abdallah Dalsh)
George Isaac, a leading member of Egypt's National Salvation Front, has rebuked the lack of action taken against those involved in attacks that target Coptic Christians and their churches.
Isaac stressed that the people taken to trial for such crimes have not been punished. In sharp contract he also highlighted the harsh rulings that Copts face when they are accused in various ways of "insulting Islam." He has described them as a sectarian punishments.
Isaac blamed the existence of Islamic elements in Egypt's judiciary, adding that they issue their rules according to their ideology not the law. He criticized authorities for not appointing Christian Copts to any leading positions while blaming the vision adopted by the Muslim Brotherhood towards Copts as people who do not have rights.
He also condemned the sectarian approach adopted by Islamic group Gammat Islamiyya, demanding it bear the responsibility of the killing of the four Egyptian Shiites recently. He signaled to the statements made by leaders of the Islamic ally of the ruling group during the demonstrations held by the Islamists on Friday in which they described the Shiites as "impure people."
He also claimed that President Mohamed Morsi has not come out to rebuke those statements because he too embraces those same extremist ideas.
Isaac added in his interview with Mideast Christian News that the situation of Copts has not seen any change during the rule of the Muslim Brotherhood compared to their situation during the former regime.
He noted they adopted the same approach pursued by Mubarak in dealing with sectarian crises and Coptic issues. He added that the Egyptian authorities have not sentenced any defendants accused of attacking churches or killing Copts, signaling the absence of Copts in the recent appointments of the governors.
Isaac stressed the need to confront the extremist culture apparent in Egyptian society. He also rebuked the recent ruling forcing Coptic teacher Demiana Abdel Nour to pay a large fine after he was accused of insulting Islam. He again described it as a sectarian punishment.
Isaac encouraged Egyptians to participate in the June 30 demonstrations to demand change of the current ruling regime. He also praised Coptic participation in the demonstrations witnessed in Tahrir Square and other Egyptian squares away from the cathedral, and called on them to participate in public life and not leave the country.