Breaking News: Gunmen Opened Fire on Bus Carrying Coptic Christians in Egypt

The gunmen opened fire on a bus in the city of Minya in southern Egypt – around 245 km south of Cairo. 

The bus, which was thought to have been carrying around 50 Coptic Christians, was heading to Anba Samuel monastery in the city.

Authorities have rushed to the scene of the attack to assess the number of casualties.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

In April, ISIS claimed responsibility for two attacks on churches in Egypt that were packed for Palm Sunday. The two bombings killed at least 37 people and injured around 100.

Last December, an Islamic State affiliate also claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing at a church in Cairo that killed about 30 people, mostly women, as well as a string of killings in Sinai Peninsula which have led to hundreds of Christians fleeing to safer areas of the country.

Since the military coup in 2013 against Egypt’s first democratically elected President Mohamed Morsi, the country has struggled to combat a wave of violence and unrest in Cairo and especially in Northern Sinai as the Egyptian military and police forces have been the target of ongoing attack .

Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, the militant group responsible for a majority of attacks on military personnel, aligned with the Islamic State group in November 2014, changing its name to “Sinai Province”.

Sinai Province has targeted Egypt’s security forces in various attacks, mostly roadside bombings, and ambushes, as well as operations against security checkpoints.

However, recently the Islamic militants started to carry out more terrorist attacks against targeted  Christians.

Last February,the Islamic State (IS) posted a video in which it threatened the Christians in Egypt and vowed to launch attacks against them, saying that  “Cairo will soon be liberated”(from Christians).

The video showed Abu Abdullah Al-Masry, the man responsible for the deadly attack Coptic Cathedral bombing in Cairo in December.

In the new released video, a narrator described Christians as ISIS’s”favorite prey” and said that they do not enjoy the status of “dhimmis”, non-Muslims who were traditionally protected inside medieval Islamic empires.”

Instead, Christians are described as “infidels”.One of the jihadists featured in the video,”God gave orders to kill every infidel.”