Egypt Palm Sunday bombing news: Egyptian Christians resentful after abandonment by state

Reuters/Mohamed Abd El Ghany
Relatives of victims react to coffins arriving to the Coptic church that was bombed on Sunday in Tanta, Egypt, April 9, 2017.

Families of the victims of the Palm Sunday bombings in Egypt were devastated and disappointed with the government's apathetic response to the tragic death of their loved ones.

On April 9, the joyous Palm Sunday celebration turned into tragedy after two bombing incidents killed 44 people. The Islamic State has since claimed responsibility for the bombings.

The relatives, feeling neglected by the state, recovered the bodies of the victims on Monday at Tanta University hospital morgue in Tanta, Egypt. They were in shock and filled with disbelief, as they look for their relatives' bodies.

The victim's families are enraged for the lack of sufficient efforts by the government in protecting Egyptian Christians from acts of terrorism. They reportedly claim that there have been no apparent security measures done within the churches despite the alleged threats.

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The first of the bombs exploded at the St. George Church in the northern Nile Delta city. It killed 27 and injured 80. Some parishioners started digging graves in the basement of St. George Church, hours after the blast.

The second explosion, which killed 17 — including three police officers — and injured 48, happened at the entrance to Saint Mark's Cathedral in Alexandria. It is the seat of the Coptic pope. Pope Tawadros safely escaped the cathedral.

Coptic Christians make up 10 percent of Egypt's population. They are the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. However, they remain a soft target to terrorists.

According to Reuters, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, promised that the government will take a step further in protecting the Christian minority in the country.

Before the Palm Sunday bombings, there had been several threats of upcoming attacks from the terror group ISIS.

ISIS claimed that the recent attack was part of the series of bombings since December 2016, when a suicide bomber arrived at the St. Peter and Paul Church near Cairo Coptic Cathedral. The incident killed 30 parishioners.

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