Catholic World News

Egyptian group charges Copts support anti-Islamic ideology

January 04, 2016

Egypt’s Al Azhar Observatory has accused the Coptic Orthodox Church of broadcasting anti-Islamic programming, the Fides news service reports.

The coverage of Islam on the al-Hayat channel tends to “increase hatred and resentment, threaten security, and spread extremist ideas,” the observatory charged. A spokesman for the Coptic Church replied that the Church does not control al-Hayat broadcasts, and disapproves of sectarianism.

The Al Azhar Observatory was set up by Al Azhar University—the leading intellectual institution in the Sunni Muslim world—to monitor religious extremism. Its criticism of the Coptic broadcasts is ominous because Al Azhar University has generally sought to encourage inter-religious dialogue and discourage hostility toward Egypt’s Christians. The criticism of the Copts, raised during the Christmas season, is likely to increase pressure on Egypt’s religious minority.

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