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15 injured in Minya sectarian clashes

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A verbal dispute leads to clashes with live bullets and stones, three houses set on fire

The clashes reportedly started after a verbal dispute between a Muslim and a Copt in a coffee shop (AFP File Photo)

The clashes reportedly started after a verbal dispute between a Muslim and a Copt in a coffee shop
(AFP File Photo)

15 were injured and at least three houses were set on fire in sectarian clashes in Bani Ahmed village in the Minya governorate in Upper Egypt on Saturday.

The clashes reportedly started after a verbal dispute between a Muslim and a Copt in a coffee shop, according to state-news agency MENA.

The dispute escalated to the use of knives which provoked others to intervene, leading to a spiral of violence that included the use of live bullets and stones.

Police and Central Security Forces used tear gas to disperse the people, after three houses were set ablaze during the clashes.

General Minya Hospital and Minya University Hospital received 15 injured in the fighting, including a policeman and three security personnel. Most injuries were caused by suffocation due to tear gas inhalation.

The Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) published a report in July warning about the rise of sectarian violence, especially against Copts.

The latest sectarian clashes in Minya were on 3 July, after General Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi’s speech that ousted President Mohamed Morsi from power.  A service centre affiliated with the Catholic Church was attacked by “angry supporters of the ousted President” who also participated in minor attacks against Copts in Minya.


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