7For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. 8All these are the beginning of sorrows.
9Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake. 10And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
Protesters hurled rocks at security forces, who later charged into the crowd swinging truncheons. There were no immediate reports of injuries.
President Hosni Mubarak blamed yesterday’s church attack, which injured 96 people, on “foreign elements” and has urged Christians and Muslims to stand united. The Interior Ministry said it increased security around churches nationwide “in light of the escalating threats from al-Qaeda to many countries,” according to a statement on its website.
Sectarian violence and discrimination have worsened in Egypt in recent years, say Copts, a charge backed by the State Department’s annual International Religious Freedom report. Copts account for about 10 percent of Egypt’s population of 80 million people.