A COPT IS KILLED, AS EGYPTIAN ARMY ATTACKS CLERGY OF PATMOS CENTER ; 2 OTHERS INJURED. Submitted by Nermo, PCP Report
05 Jan 2004
Washington DC. January 5. The Patmos Center came under attack by the Egyptian army once again on January 5, 2004. During the assault on the Center, 600 soldiers and two bulldozers attacked the building, partially destroying the fence and setting fire to structures on the premises.
The assault culminated when at the prompting of army officials, a bus driver attempted to run over the church Bishop, killing one staff member and hospitalizing two others. The attack came at the heels of a meeting with a high ranking army official last week. Patmos Center staff had been told that previous issues concerning the Center were now resolved and there would be no further army assaults. Days later, several hundred armed soldiers exclaiming ?God is great,? led a raid on the Center. Soldiers armed with weapons blockaded the road surrounding the Center, halting traffic as they began destruction of the encompassing fence.
During the army-led destruction, head of the Center Bishop Botros, attempting to mediate, was singled out for attack. Acting upon instructions from army officials, a bus driver swerved off the road towards the Bishop. Staff members rushing to his aid, were hit by the oncoming vehicle. One staff member was immediately killed and two others hospitalized. Army officials claimed that the bus driver had simply lost control of his vehicle and denied involvement. Several other staff members and clergy were injured as they attempted to protect the Center.
The Patmos Center has been attacked repeatedly by the Egyptian army in 1996, 1997, 20