October 24, 2011

CNS PHOTO | MOHAMED ABD EL-GHANY, REUTERS

A Christian woman mourns on the coffin of Mina Demian during a funeral at Abassaiya Orthodox Cathedral in Cairo Oct. 10. At least 26 people, mostly Christians, were killed Oct. 9 when troops broke up a peaceful protest against an attack on a church in southern Egypt.

Condemning an attack on unarmed Christians in Egypt, Pope Benedict said that during the country's transition to democracy, all of its citizens and institutions must work to guarantee the rights of minorities.

At the end of his Oct. 12 general audience, Pope Benedict said he was "profoundly saddened" by the deaths Oct. 9 of at least 26 people, mostly Christians, after peaceful protesters were attacked by gangs, and then a speeding military vehicle ran into them and officers fired on the crowd.

The pope said Egypt has been "lacerated by attempts to undermine peaceful coexistence among its communities."