Saturday, February 25, 2017
The Coptic minority is being targeted by local cells of the Islamic state. The murder took place yesterday in Al-Arich. The man's house was set on fire. Previously a 60 year old Christian and son were killed; the young man was burnt alive. Daesh announces new attacks on social networks.
Cairo (AsiaNews / Agencies) - An Egyptian Coptic Christian was killed yesterday and his house was set on fire in the north of the Sinai Peninsula. A jihadist cell linked to the Islamic State (SI) claimed the murder the same cell implicated in past attacks against Christians. This is the third victim in two days for the local Coptic community.
On February 19, in a video posted on the Telegram messaging site, the Islamic State had promised to strike the Christian community. And the attacks have not been long in coming.
On February 22, the authorities found the bullet-riddled body of a Christian about 60; his son died with him also, burned alive by jihadists. The authorities h found the body of the young man at dawn, in the backyard of a school of Al-Arich.
Yesterday the third victim in just two days: a Christian of 40, was found lifeless, killed by a gunshot to the head, on the roof of his home. After killing him, the terrorists set fire his house on fire.
Yesterday’s murder also happened in Al-Arich, the capital of North Sinai Governorate. Investigators have now focused their attention on the jihadist track, and it was later confirmed by Daesh militiamen [Arabic acronym for the Islamic state] in the region.
Earlier, on February 12 in Al-Arich, some masked men on a motorcycle gunned down a Christian veterinarian, while he was at the wheel of his own car. In late January, a Christian officer was killed by a group of armed men; the identity of the attackers is still unknown, in this case.
Since the military coup of 2013, which put an end to the presidency of Mohamed Morsi and overthrew the government of the Muslim Brotherhood, the northern Sinai has been the scene of bloody attacks perpetrated by militiamen jihadists. Most often the attacks are concentrated against army units, police, security officials. However, the attacks have not spared the Christian Coptic minority. Among these, the most serious was the suicide bombing on 11 December against a Coptic Orthodox church in Cairo, which caused 29 victims.
In the past, al Qaeda had set its sights on the Coptic Christians. In particular, in 2010 the local cell of the terror network led by Osama bin Laden had promised the "cleansing" of Christians from the Sinai region. Threats that came to fruition on the night of New Year's Day 2011, when a car bomb exploded in front of a Coptic church, killing 29 people. SHARED from AsiaNews IT
He was the son of the Patrician and Prefect of Constantinople, George, and his wife Eukratia, and entered the service of the State. In 784 when Paul IV Patriarch of Constantinople died Tarasius was an imperial secretary, and a champion of the veneration of images. It may be that before his death the patriarch had recommended Tarasius as his successor in the patriarchate to the Empress Irene who was regent for her son Constantine VI (780-797). After the burial of Paul IV a great popular assembly was held before the Magnaura Palace to discuss the filling of the vacant see. The empress delivered an oration on the new appointment to the patriarchate and the people proclaimed Tarasius as the most worthy candidate. The empress agreed but said that Tarasius refused to accept the position. Tarasius now made a speech himself in which he declared he felt himself unworthy of the office, further that the elevation of a layman was very hazardous, and that the position of the Church of Constantinople had become a very difficult one, as it was separated from the Catholics of Western Europe and isolated from the other Oriental patriarchates; consequently he would only be willing to accept the position of patriarch on condition that Church unity be restored and that, in connection with the pope, an oecumenical council be called. The majority of the populace approved of these views and the imperial Court agreed to it. So on 25 December, 784, Tarasius was consecrated patriarch. In 785 he sent the priest George as his legate to Hadrian I with a letter in which he announced his appointment. In his reply the pope expressed his disapproval of the elevation of Tarasius directly from the laity to the dignity of a bishop contrary to canonical regulation, but allowed clemency to rule in view of the orthodoxy of the new patriarch's views, and recognized him as patriarch. After this by joint action with the pope and the imperial Court Tarasius called the Second Council of Nicaea, the Seventh Ecumenical Council, which rejected Iconoclasm. Union with the Roman Church was restored.
After the synod the patriarch had a number of struggles not only with the Iconoclastic party of the capital but also with a party of Orthodox monks. First, the latter upbraided him for restoring to office the bishops who had formerly maintained Iconoclasm, but who had submitted to the decrees of the Council of 787. As, however, this was in accordance with the decrees of the council the accusation was allowed to drop. Another accusation was much more serious, namely, that Tarasius tolerated and encouraged simony, because those bishops who had given money to obtain their positions were only commanded by him to do a year's penance and were permitted to retain their offices. The patriarch defended himself in writing against this accusation which he denied in toto; moreover, he issued a severe synodal letter against Simonists. The monks, however, were not satisfied; they maintained their accusations and also attacked the Council of 787. At a later date Theodore of Studium, who took part in these disputes, changed his opinion of Tarasius, and also of the Second Council of Nicaea, the oecumenical character of which he acknowledged. Many serious difficulties still existed in regard to Western Europe. There were also fresh disputes in Constantinople when the Emperor Constantine VI put aside his lawful wife and wished to marry Theodata, a relative of Abbot Theodore of Studium. Tarasius positively refused to perform the second marriage and expressed his displeasure at the conduct of the priest Joseph who had married the emperor. The zealous monks, whose leaders were the Abbots Plato of Saccudium and Theodore of Studium, accused the patriarch of weakness, because he took no further steps against the emperor. They refused to have Church fellowship any longer with Tarasius, and were, consequently, violently persecuted by the emperor who, however, also treated the patriarch harshly. After Irene had dethroned Constantine in 797, Tarasius deposed the priest Joseph and peace was once more restored between the patriarch and the monks. (See THEODORE OF STUDIUM). In 802 Tarasius crowned as emperor Nicephorus, who had overthrown Irene, an act that greatly dissatisfied the populace. The patriarch had nothing to do with the intrigues of the court. His life was ascetic and simple, he checked the luxury of the clergy, preached with great zeal, and was very benevolent to the poor. After his death he was venerated as a saint. His name is also placed in the Roman Martyrology under the date of 25 February. Catholic Enclopedia