MORE than 5000 Coptic Christians are expected to gather in Sydney’s CBD today in protest over the growing violence against the religious sect in Cairo.
Reports from Cairo say Coptic women and girls have been targeted in a recent spate of kidnappings, rapes and forced conversions to Islam, prompting today’s protest in Sydney.
The Australian Coptic community is calling on the Australian government to push for UN recognition of human rights abuses against their people in Egypt.
Father Bassilious Gad, of St Mary & St Mina’s Coptic Cathedral in Sydney’s southwest, said he also wanted to support his Coptic brothers and sisters currently protesting in Maspero, Cairo, who have been situated outside a national television station for more than two weeks.
Father Gad said he was expecting more than 5000 protesters to congregate today in Sydney.
Originally the Coptic congregation in Melbourne was to gather outside the Melbourne Museum, which is holding the Tutankhamun exhibition, but this was cancelled due to concerns from the museum’s curators.