Cairo church fire kills 41

Cairo church fire kills 41


A fire that broke out on Sunday in the middle of a mass in a church in a working-class district of Cairo killed 41 people, mourning the largest Christian community in the Middle East with 10 to 15 of the 103 million Egyptians. 

The Egyptian Coptic Church reported '41 dead and 14 injured' citing 'sources within the Ministry of Health' , in a statement posted on his Facebook account.

This fire, the origin of which remains to be determined, has been brought under control, according to the authorities. It happened at the Abou Sifine church in the popular district of Imbaba, named after Saint Mercury of Caesarea, revered by the Copts.

“I mobilized all the services of the 'State for all measures to be taken,' President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi immediately reacted on his Facebook account.

The prosecution announced that it had opened an investigation and sent a team to the scene, in order to to establish the reasons for the fire, while the Ministry of Health indicated that it had dispatched several dozen ambulances.

Mr Sissi also announced that he had “presented his condolences by telephone” to Coptic Pope Tawadros II, who has led the Christian community in Egypt since 2012. 

Since then, the Coptic Orthodox Church displayed itself more on the political scene, under the leadership of Tawadros II, proclaimed supporter of Mr. Sisi, the first president of Egypt to attend the Coptic Christmas mass each year while his predecessors sent representatives.

In the sprawling megalopolis of Cairo, where millions of Egyptians live in informal settlements, accidental fires are not uncommon. More generally, Egypt, with dilapidated and poorly maintained infrastructure, regularly experiences deadly fires in its various provinces.

In March 2021, at least 20 people died in the fire of a textile factory in the eastern suburbs of Cairo. In 2020, two hospital fires claimed the lives of fourteen COVID-19 patients.