Victims' relatives blame Egyptian government over twin church bombings

(Reuters/Mohamed Abd El Ghady)Relatives of the Egypt Palm Sunday bombings mourn their dead.

Relatives of the victims of the Palm Sunday church bombings in Egypt put the blame on the government for the attacks that took the lives of 44 men and injured more than 100 others.

However, while the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant, also known as ISIL or ISIS, has already claimed responsibility for the explosions that happened in Coptic Churches in Tanta and Alexandria on Sunday, those left behind who mourn their dead point their fingers at the government.

A priest in Tanta believes the Egyptian authorities failed to secure the Coptic Churches and its people.

"There has been a lot of neglect and failure to protect the Coptic community in Egypt," said Father Daniel Maher to Middle East Eye. He accused the security in the church's vicinity and nearby areas as just for show.

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"The security guards who were there were only there to create an image of security, but there was none there," he added.

Meanwhile, other Coptic Christians accuse the government of complacency in its security measures.

"The way these bombings took place raise serious questions around security measures taken to secure the venues and ensure the safety of the people inside," said Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights member Ishak Ibrahim.

This is not the first of attacks against Coptic Christians in the nation. Last year, an ISIS jihadist bombed the St. Mark's Cathedral in Cairo, which left 28 women and children dead.

In the wake of the December attack, Egypt President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi promised his staunch fight to counter terrorism in the country and to hand out severe punishments to those who will be found guilty.

However, for Coptic Christians in the nation, the recent incidents seem to indicate otherwise and many have expressed their dismay at the government.

Gharbiya Province Director of Security Major General Hussam Ad-Din Khalifa got a severe beating from the angry crowd after he visited the explosion site at St. George's Church, said CNN. He was subsequently sacked from his duties.

Some Coptic Christians have expressed their loss of confidence in the president and told Reuters that they will not rely on government's security anymore following the attacks.

Maher said that the Coptic Christian community's cries for reforms over the years have gone on deaf ears. However, they remain positive and will continue to pray and go to church event after the attacks.

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