Egypt man sentenced to death for Coptic shooting

The attack prompted protests by both Christians and Muslims.

Egypt man sentenced to death for Coptic shooting

An Egyptian state security court on Sunday sentenced a Muslim man to death for killing six Coptic Christians and a Muslim police officer in a drive-by shooting on Coptic Christmas Eve in January 2010.

Mohamed Ahmed Hussein, 39, known as Hamam Kamouni, had been charged with the "premeditated murder" of the Christians and the police officer and with intimidating citizens in Nagaa Hamady in southern Egypt after mass on the eve of Coptic Christmas.

The judge said Hussein's sentence would be sent to the Grand Mufti for confirmation, a reference to Egypt's top religious authority who is called on to confirm death sentences.

The court said Hussein's two accomplices, Kurashi Abu Haggag and Hindawi Muhammed Sayyid, who were charged with aiding in the murder and possession of weapons, would be announced on Feb. 20.

Christians account for about 10 percent of Egypt's mostly Muslim population of about 80 million. Sectarian violence is rare.

Last week a Muslim policeman was charged with shooting dead a Christian man on a train in the town of Samalut in southern Egypt and he will be tried for premeditated murder.

A New Year bombing outside a church in the port city of Alexandria killed 23 people and injured dozens in what analysts say was the worst attack on Christians in recent Egyptian history. The attack prompted protests by both Christians and Muslims.

The referral of death sentences to the Grand Mufti is a procedural step that almost always results in confirmation of the sentence.


Reuters

Last Mod: 16 Ocak 2011, 15:46
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