Egypt / Syria: Stop the violence against Christian Communities. Joseph Daul MEP, Chairman of the EPP Group, Mario Mauro MEP and Cristian Dan Preda MEP
The European Parliament has adopted a joint text urging the halt of violence and the provision of more protection for Christian Communities in Egypt and Syria
"We ask in a very clear way that from now on Coptic Christian communities of Egypt do not fall victim to violent attacks again, can live in peace and can freely express their beliefs across Egypt", said Joseph Daul MEP, Chairman of the EPP Group, following the approval of a joint resolution text on the situation of Christian Communities in Egypt and Syria by the European Parliament today.
"The Egyptian authorities should give the adequate protection to the Coptic Christian Communities and to their churches in order to put an end to the continuous aggression and destruction of churches by Islamic extremists", said Mario Mauro MEP.
"Now more than ever, during this critical period of democratic transition, Egypt needs to protect and involve the Coptic Christian communities in building the future of the country. Freedom of religion, conscience and thought, as well as the protection of minorities must be solidly anchored in the new constitutional text that will be adopted in Egypt", added Cristian Dan Preda MEP.
"In case there are serious violations of human rights in Egypt the EU should consider the adoption of alternative measures. The Egyptian authorities have to ensure full respect of all fundamental rights, including freedom of association, freedom of peaceful assembly, freedom of expression and freedom of religion, conscience and thought for all citizens in their country, including the Coptic Christians communities that have been victims of violent aggressions for a long time now", explained Mario Mauro MEP.
"As brutal repression persists in Syria, we are also concerned for the Christian communities in this country. Their safety is increasingly put at risk by actions aimed at fuelling sectarian tensions. Syrian authorities must immediately launch a process of deep democratic reforms and ensure full respect of fundamental rights, notably freedom of religion, belief, conscience and thought", said Cristian Dan Preda MEP.
The resolution approved today stresses the importance of an independent, thorough and transparent investigation into the events of Maspero in Egypt, in order to hold all those accountable for their actions. The EP firmly condemns the disproportionate and brutal use of force against peaceful protesters in Syria and has expressed its deepest concern at the gravity of the human rights violations reiterating its call on Bashar al Assad to relinquish power immediately in order to facilitate a democratic transition.
For further information:
Joseph Daul MEP, Chairman of the EPP Group, Tel: +33-3-88175525
Mario Mauro MEP, Tel. +33-3-88-175387
Cristian Dan Preda MEP, Tel. +33-3-88-175261
Antoine Ripoll, Chairman's Spokesman, Tel: +32-475-856290
Francesco Frapiccini, EPP Group Press & Communications Service, Tel: +32-473-941652
Eugen Sandu, EPP Group Press & Communications Service, Tel: +32-472-547584
Notes to Editors:
The EPP Group is by far the largest political group in the European Parliament with 264 Members.