Egypt identifies Alexandria church bomber as fugitive with militant ties

He said: "The people feel a close bond with their country and all of them see themselves as Egyptians - whether they are Christians or Muslims".

Here is a recap of their history, their status today and recent attacks against them.

Deflecting Western criticism that he has suppressed political opposition and human rights activists since he was elected in 2014, Sisi has sought to present himself as an indispensable bulwark against terrorism in the Middle East. They have largely coexisted peacefully with the Muslim-majority public for centuries.

Several churches and monasteries in Egypt are built on sites Copts believe were visited by the Holy Family.

"I say to our Coptic Christian brothers and sisters".

The traditional handing out of candies to children by Coptic Pope Tawadros II before the start of Easter mass on Sunday will also be cancelled. A minority is divided between Coptic Catholics and various Coptic Protestant branches.

Pope Tawadros II had led a Palm Sunday service in the church shortly before.

Cairo -Countries around the world continued to condemn the twin bombings of Coptic churches in Egypt that left at least 40 people dead and injured over 100.

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"Worshippers, no matter what their belief is, should always be free to pray in peace", she stated.

The King reiterated Bahrain's support to Egypt and its backing of all measures taken to maintain its security and stability.

Poorly represented in government, Copts complain that they are sidelined from many posts in the justice system, universities and the police.

The American president announced in his daily press meeting his deepest condolences in behave of the American nation and issued: "So sad to hear of the terrorist attack in Egypt".

Meanwhile, the Islamic State has become more and more active in Egypt, especially in the region of North Sinai, and recently vowed to step up its attacks against Egypt's Christians. In December, a massive church bombing killed 30 people in Cairo, and a series of killings in the Sinai have caused hundreds to flee to safer areas.

The next month, security forces used deadly force to break up two pro-Morsi protest camps in Cairo.

However, Christians have been specifically targeted in terrorist attacks in the country in the last few months.

A day after the Palm Sunday bloodshed, the Interior Ministry said it killed seven Islamic State militants in an exchange of gunfire during a security operation in the southern city of Assiut.

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