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Egyptian Church leaders welcome presidential election result

Catholic World News - May 30, 2014

A spokesman for the Egyptian Catholic bishops welcomed the victory of Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in the country’s presidential election, saying that the result was “a clear call by Egypt’s political and civil society against Islamic fundamentalism.”

Father Rafic Greiche told the AsiaNews service that as Sisi “knows that Christians are an important part of Egypt and he wants to defend religious coexistence.” He observed, too, that “so far he has kept his word.”

"Sisi is the right man at the right time,” agreed Bishop Adel Zaky, the apostolic vicar of Alexandria. "His election gives all Egyptians, Muslims and Christians cause for hope.”

Bishop Zaky said that the victory of al-Sisi—who was Egypt’s top military official before resigning to pursue the presidency—was committed to the preservation of Egypt as a civil society. He demonstrated that commitment, the bishop told Aid to the Church in Need, when he led the military in an intervention to oust the government led by Mohamed Morsi and the Islamic Brotherhood. "If General al-Sisi had not been at the head of the military there would have been a civil war,” Bishop Zaky said.

The Muslim Brotherhood refused to participate in the presidential election. But Father Greiche said that “they cannot ignore the fact that the entire country is sickened by the recent violence.” He said that he hoped Islamic militants “will soon get the message.”

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