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Row sparks sectarian violence at Alexandria in Egypt

Row sparks sectarian violence at Alexandria in Egypt
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It started as a row between two young men in Egypt’s second city of Alexandria. It then became a family feud and finally mushroomed into clashes between Christians and Muslims that left at least one dead and dozens injured.

The violence happened outside a Coptic church late at night after the two men – one Christian, one Muslim – began quarrelling.

The two sides threw firebombs at each other before security forces intervened.

“We Muslims and Christians live together. And we support the Interior Ministry in solving these problems. We solve disputes even if the security forces don’t come. And the Christians would attest to this,” said Mahmoud Abdul Maguid, a local Muslim resident.

Reports say eight people were arrested by police who’d moved in to seal off the area.

President Mursi has pledged to protect the rights of Egypt’s Coptic Christians who make up around 10 per cent of the population, but tensions remain.

At least five people were killed and more than 80 injured in clashes last month between Christians and Muslims in Cairo after a funeral service for four Christians killed in sectarian violence.