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Ancient Egyptian monastery closed to visitors because of security fears

Catholic World News - September 11, 2013

Egyptian officials have closed off access to St. Catherine's monastery, one of the nation's most popular sites for tourists and pilgrims, because of security fears.

St. Catherine's monastery, at the foot of Mt. Sinai, was built in the 6th century under Emperor Justinian. The ancient building houses a community of Orthodox monks, who remain there.

Local residents are unhappy with the decision to close the monastery to visitors, since tourism provides the main source of revenue for the nearby town. But assaults on Christians elsewhere in Egypt have caused concerns for the safety of pilgrims visiting the site.

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