7 killed in attack on bus heading to Coptic monastery in Egypt

CAIRO, Nov. 2 (Xinhua) — At least seven people were killed and 17 others wounded in an attack on a bus heading from Upper Egypt’s province of Sohag to a Coptic Christian monastery in the southern province of Minya, an archbishop in Sohag told Xinhua.

“Unknown masked men opened fire on a passenger minibus en route to St. Samuel monastery in Minya,” the archbishop said on condition of anonymity.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.

Last year in the same place, at least 28 Copts were killed in a similar attack.

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi later mourned the victims of the attack and vowed to continue the country’s anti-terror war and bring the perpetrators to justice.

“I assert our determination to continue our efforts to combat dark terrorism and pursue the perpetrators,” the Egyptian president wrote on his official Facebook page, wishing a speedy recovery for the injured.

The wounded have been taken to nearby Maghagha public hospital in Minya, where dozens of Copts protested against the attack.

Mina Bassem, a 6-year-old child among the passengers in the attacked bus, was seen in a video narrating to a bishop in Minya some details of the tragedy.

“After we left St. Samuel monastery and on our way back, I saw two vehicles with gunmen attacking three minibuses including ours, killing the driver first,” the little boy said, noting that his mother, grandmother and elder brother were wounded.

Bishops from Minya declined to comment on the incident.

But Bishop of St. Macarius Monastery told Xinhua that such “very painful and sorrowful” terrorist attacks will not affect the national unity.

“There is no religion that urges killing, so such attacks are committed by conspirators who plot to ruin the country. Egyptians, Copts and Muslims are and will always be united with love and solidarity,” the bishop told Xinhua.

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