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While many consider Egypt to be a Muslim country, it has a strong and vibrant Coptic Christian community that makes up about 10 percent of the Egyptian population. With the political unrest and violence taking place there right now, one US Senator from Missouri is asking Congress for legislation to protect the Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East. KSMU’s Jennifer Davidson has details.
Republican Senator Roy Blunt is proposing a bill that would create a new Department of State special envoy for religious minorities in the Middle East. The bill’s co-sponsors come from both sides of the political aisle.
NPR and other news organizations have reported the destruction or vandalism of Coptic churches in the past two weeks as a mostly secular military faces off against Islamist supporters of ousted president Mohammed Morsi.
In a press release, Blunt said he urges Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to allow a vote on the bill, which Blunt says would, “demonstrate to leaders in the region that the United States takes religious freedom seriously.”
You can read the entire bill by clicking here.
For KSMU News, I’m Jennifer Davidson.
And you can hear NPR’s reporting on the recent trials faced by Egypt’s Coptic Christians by clicking here.