UK’s top arch­bishop of­fers con­do­lences in Egypt visit

The China Post - - INTERNATIONAL -

Arch­bishop of Can­ter­bury Justin Welby, the Church of Eng­land leader, of­fered his con­do­lences to Egyptian of­fi­cials Sun­day over the be­head­ings of 21 Cop­tic Chris­tians by ji­hadists in Libya.

The Copts, 20 of them Egyptian, had trav­eled to Libya for work. They were kid­napped and ex­e­cuted by Is­lamic State (IS) mil­i­tants in Fe­bru­ary, pro­vok­ing Egyptian airstrikes on IS tar­gets in the strife­torn coun­try.

Dur­ing his one-day visit, Welby met Pres­i­dent Ab­del Fat­tah el-Sissi, Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, grand imam of Al-Azhar, the high­est author­ity in Sunni Is­lam and Cop­tic Pope Tawadros II, of­fi­cials said.

Welby of­fered his “con­do­lence over the killings” of the Copts, Sissi's of­fice said in a state­ment.

He was also to lead a com­mu­nion ser­vice at the All Saint's Angli­can Cathe­dral in Cairo’s up­scale Za­malek dis­trict.

In ser­mons and speeches, Welby has called for greater sup­port for Chris­tians in the Mid­dle East and Africa.

He has also backed mil­i­tary ac­tion against IS ji­hadists in Iraq, warn­ing that the group rep­re­sents an “ex­tra­or­di­nary, once in a mil­len­nium threat.”

On Sun­day, the group re­leased a video pur­port­edly show­ing the ex­e­cu­tion of some 30 Ethiopian Chris­tians cap­tured in Libya.

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