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Ezbet Basillious
Images from U.S. Copts Association
Police have arrested a Coptic Christian man and woman for allegedly burning down their own house church in the village of Ezbet Basillious, Egypt on July 11, according to a July 17 report from Compass Direct. Christians in the village believe that the arson attack and subsequent arrests of the believers indicate local police corruption and collusion.

When the Church of St. Abaskharion Kellini was set ablaze, the guards stationed at the church had left their posts. The perpetrators reportedly entered the church building through a connecting door from the adjoining residence -- the home of Fulla Assad (30). It took approximately two hours for police to arrive at the church. Assad, her mother-in-law and Reda Gamal (35) were later taken to the police station for questioning. Assad and Gamal have since been arrested and remained in custody at last report. The Egyptian State Security Investigations officers have since followed up on eyewitness testimonies ignored by local police and have arrested three Muslim suspects who were seen entering the church with cans of kerosene and leaving shortly afterwards shouting "Allahu Akbar [God is great]."

Pray that those who are truly guilty will be brought to justice. Pray that Gamal and Assad will be bold witnesses for Christ while in detention. Ask God to encourage and strengthen the Christians in Ezbet Basillious.

To learn more about Egypt's persecuted Christians, click here.

Country Information

Designation
Persecuted

Population
106,437,241 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Egyptian (99.7), other (0.3)

Religion (%)
Islam (90), Christianity (10)

Leader
President Abdelfattah Said El-Sisi (2014)

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system based on Napoleonic civil and penal law, Islamic religious law, and vestiges of colonial-era laws

Source: World Factbook

Pray for Egypt

Pray on behalf of those who are facing economic and social challenges because of their Christian faith. Ask the Lord to provide for their spiritual and practical needs – further strengthening and emboldening them so they can effectively share the message of the Gospel with others in their communities. May the hearts of those who hear it be open and receptive to the wonderful truths contained in God’s Word.

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