Egypt: new Coptic Pope rejects religious state constitution

But Tawadros II reaches out to Muslims

06 November, 13:47

Bishop Tawadros named pope of Egypt's Orthodox Church Bishop Tawadros named pope of Egypt's Orthodox Church

(ANSAmed) - CAIRO, NOV 6 - Egypt's new Pope of the Coptic Church, Tawadros II has said that he would "totally reject" a constitution to make Egypt a religious state, according to a series of local media reports. The Pope is two days into his appointment as spiritual leader of the largest group of Christians in the Middle East.

Islamic fundamentalist movements are pushing for Sharia Law in the country, an idea that the Pope was said to share. But he waylaid Coptic fears of an Islamisisation of Egyptian society, while at the same time reaching out to Muslims. "I say to our brothers that Egypt is an incomparable country. We have open hearts. Will give them all our respect and follow the example of coexistence in spite of attempts to impair this close unity", he said.

Tawadros II acknowledged that the marginalization of Copts in Egyptian society began with the advent of Gamal abd el Nasser. But "the revolution last year has given them a opportunity to re-enter society," he added. (ANSAMed)

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