An eyewitness account of events in Luxor, Egypt
At around 6:30 PM on 1/18/2006, and per the orders of security officials in the village of Udayssat, electricity was deliberately cut off the entire region, five minutes later a multitude of Muslims – over 5000 of them- started their rampage against the Coptic church in the village using metal chains, swords, wood sticks and axes, nothing protected the Copts inside the church except for the grace of God and their presence inside church; despite this, around 300 Copts were injured.
Security officials blocked the wounded Copts from seeking medical help under the pretext that their names were not documented among the wounded. However, 20 of them managed to make it to the local hospital. The only ambulance that arrived to the scene was wrecked by the mob of extremists and radicals. The security chief threatened the priest in charge of the church and literally told him "The security forces are not here to protect you, but rather to prevent you from praying, and you will not be allowed to pray in church"
As for Mr. Ali Al Udayssi, the Shura Council representative of the region, he is personally involved in inciting the crowd, as a matter of fact; his father had burned the same church in 1968.
We are pleading for HELP so that the Copts of Udayssat be allowed to return back to their homes and practice their normal daily life, we are still terrified and unable to go back fearing the aggression of the Muslims of the village.
The Egyptian media has falsely reported that the burned church was a guest house, yet the church was established in 1960 and burned once in 1968 by the father of the current representative of Udassat in the Egyptian Shura Council, the church was renovated afterwards in 1969.