May 2016 Church & State - May 2015

Around The World: Egypt Renews Anti-Blasphemy Push

  AU admin

Egyptian authorities are targeting religious minorities as part of an anti-blasphemy crackdown, the Associated Press (AP) reported recently.

In February, a court sentenced four Coptic Christian teenagers to jail for insulting Islam. The teens had filmed a video of themselves mimicking Muslim prayers and pretending to behead each other to satirize radical movements like ISIS. Egyptian law prohibits citizens from “exploiting religion” or promoting “extremist thought.”

According to the AP, Egypt prosecuted 21 blasphemy cases in 2015. Roughly half of these cases targeted Coptic Christians, though some targeted atheists as well. A court sentenced Mustafa Abdel-Nabi to three years in prison in abstentia for discussing atheism on his Facebook page.

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