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One death following clashes outside church on New Year’s Eve

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Maspero Union holds security forces and health ministry responsible for young man’s death

The Maspero Youth Union has blamed the death of Coptic youth Ihab Ghattas on security forces and the Ministry of Health for falling short of their responsibilities.

Ghattas, 23, was shot on Tuesday night after a Coptic mass in Mar Girgis church in Ain Shams, Cairo, and was allegedly attacked by a Muslim Brotherhood protester, according to the Maspero Youth Union. He died later in a hospital due to his wounds.

In a statement released on Wednesday, the Maspero Youth Union claimed that Ghattas was transported by car to a hospital in Tok-Tok due to the absence of an ambulance. The Coptic union added that Ghattas was initially taken to three different hospitals which all refused to admit him due to the absences of an emergency room, an available bed and an intensive care unit, respectively. He was finally admitted to Saint Peter hospital, where he died after bleeding for three hours, the statement read.

The Maspero Youth Union called for an investigation into the security and medical “negligence which led to Ghattas’ death”.

“Insignificant” clashes had taken place between security forces and Muslim Brotherhood marches at Ain Shams on Tuesday night, according to the Ministry of Interior.

The ministry’s media office stressed that none of “our Christian brothers” were hurt from the clashes. The march, which began at Ahmed Essmat Street, was dispersed after a short period of time with the use of teargas as stipulated by the Protest Law, after protesters allegedly began provoking bystanders.

The Anti-Coup Alliance, in a statement on Monday, 30 December, called for peaceful protests to continue during what they dubbed “the week of rage”.


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