Cairo, Egypt. The Egyptians, while no strangers to radical Islam or terrorism had yet another visit from the angel of death today as a powerful blast has claimed 30 plus lives in a Christian church locally.
There were at least 36 people killed and 100 plus wounded after a bomb exploded in a church north of Cairo that was packed with Palm Sunday worshippers. The attack in the Nile Delta town of Tanta was the latest in a series of attacks on Egypt’s Christian minority, which makes up around 10% of the population and has been repeatedly targeted by Islamic extremists. The bombing comes just weeks before Pope Francis is due to visit Egypt.
News footage from inside the church, where a large number of people gathered around showed bodies covered with paper laying motionless dead. No one immediately claimed the attack, which comes a week before Easter.A local Islamic State affiliate claimed a suicide bombing at a church in Cairo in December that killed around 30 people.
More recently the militant group called Liwa al-Thawra claimed responsibility for an April 1 bomb attack targeting a police training centre in Tanta, which wounded 16 people. The group, believed to be linked to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, has mainly targeted security forces and distanced itself from attacks on Christians.
The Egyptians have struggled to combat a wave of Islamic terrorism since the 2013 military overthrow of an elected Islamist president in a US sponsored color revolution, designed to make Egypt more “pro-western”.