1 April 2014
The Australian Coptic Movement Association (ACM) condemns in the strongest possible terms the recent brutal murder of Mary Sameh George by Islamists in Ain Shams, Egypt.
This callous, vicious and unprovoked act occurred during violent clashes that took place after Friday prayers between supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood organisation and Egyptian security forces which left five people dead and several people injured according to the Egyptian Interior Ministry.
Eyewitnesses who appeared on the Egyptian program “90 Minutes” reported Mary Sameh George was parking her vehicle near the Virgin Mary and Archangel Michael Coptic Orthodox Church in Ain Shams in order to give medicine to an elderly and sick woman.
Pro Muslim-Brotherhood supporters recognised that she was a Christian by the cross on her car. These Muslim-Brotherhood supporters then specifically targeted her even though she had no involvement in the clashes between the Islamists and security forces. They jumped on top of her vehicle to the point that the roof collapsed. In what can only be described as a savage and ruthless attack, Mary George was violently removed from her vehicle, severely beaten and mauled – portions of her scalp and hair were pulled off. She was repeatedly stabbed, with some accounts saying up to 16 times, and she died in a humiliated and abject state. Afterwards, her car, with the hanging cross, was burnt.
Mary George was targeted for her faith in what is becoming an increasingly intolerable and inhospitable region for Christians; given that Ain Shams is a known stronghold for the Muslim Brotherhood. There is no justification for this reprehensible act. For this reason the ACM unreservedly condemns this murder.
We call for the Egyptian Government to promptly initiate investigations into this incident and ensure that the perpetrators of this vicious crime are brought to justice. The Egyptian Government must send a clear message that this behaviour will not be tolerated and that the culprits will be held to account under the full force of the law. Government sentiment has recently declared that the indigenous people of Egypt have a place in their own country and that Egypt will move forward as one, united people, irrespective of creed. Such sentiments must be reflected in action.
We call for the Egyptian Government to do its utmost to protect its citizens and their basic right to freedom of religion – without fear of harm, intimidation or violence.
Further, we strongly urge Western governments to pay due attention to the extreme and violent agenda of the Muslim Brotherhood, an organisation with documented links to Al-Qaeda.
The Australian Coptic Movement Association