Egypt: Christian girls abducted in name of Islam

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By Aidan Clay, International Christian Concern (ICC)

Mary, kidnapped in 2007

“We don’t know if our daughter is still alive,” Magda told ICC during a recent visit to Egypt. “We haven’t seen or heard from her in five years. Her kidnapper called us and said she was dead and buried.”

Mary disappeared in June 2007, but to her mother, Magda, it feels like only yesterday that she was sleeping peacefully in her own bed under the loving care of her parents. For those who lose a child, as Magda had, the pain never goes away.

“There were no warning signs. There was nothing we could do, but the guilt doesn’t go away. If only we could have known [what would happen],” Magda explained while fighting back tears.

The abduction took place on an ordinary Thursday evening. After school, Mary went out with friends for pizza and a movie. While sipping cocoa at a restaurant, Mary began to feel dizzy and sick. “You go ahead and go home,” said Nahla, a Muslim girl. “The rest of us want to go to the cinema.” Nahla was new to Mary’s group of friends; they had only known her a few weeks.

Mary left the group to catch a bus home alone. This was the last time her friends would see her. No one knows what happened next, but Mary was gone.

Mary’s friends and parents believe Nahla had something to do with it; perhaps she was an accomplice to Mary’s abductors who put drugs in Mary’s drink. Although this suspicion has yet to be confirmed, after Mary’s disappearance, Nahla was nowhere to be found.

Mary’s parents stayed up throughout the night waiting anxiously for their daughter’s return. Mary’s father filed a report at the police station the next morning. He stayed at the station the entire day, determined to see that an investigation was being carried out. Late that afternoon, the police told him they had found his daughter.

Mary was escorted along with several other women into the station by four men in Islamic dress with long beards. The men were Salafis, a group that follows the strict doctrine of Wahhabi Islam from Saudi Arabia. Mary was covered head to toe in a burka. “[My husband] recognized her by her shoes,” Magda told ICC.

Two armed policemen stood by, watching the father’s every move. When he called Mary by name, a Muslim man hit her in the face. There was no answer.

Then he tried to grab his daughter, but she was quickly taken away by the police. The father yelled after her while struggling desperately to free himself from the grip of the police officers who were holding him down. It was no use. Mary was forced in the back of a van and driven away.

“I went back to the police station that night with my son,” Magda said. “They cursed us and humiliated us. They treated us very badly.”

The parents soon began receiving threatening e-mails and phone calls. “Become a Muslim and we’ll spare your life,” one caller said. “Pay a £6,000 ransom or your daughter is dead,” said another. One caller told Magda that Mary had been killed and buried.

“Look at me. I’m dying inside,” Mary’s father told BBC. “Jesus Christ gave me my daughter. He gave her to me, not to them.”

Two months later, several police officers showed up at the parents’ house. “They demanded that we sign documents that said Mary had changed her religion to Islam,” Magda said. The parents refused. Months later, however, they learned that a birth certificate had been forged stating that Mary was now a Muslim.

Still, the family would not give up. They hired a renowned Christian lawyer who demanded to see Mary. Agreeing to meet at a neutral location – Mary’s former university – Magda saw her daughter one last time. There she sat, fully covered on the sofa in the dean’s office. “My dear, are you OK?” Magda asked. There was no response. “Mary, can you hear me?”

Mary seemingly did not understand or was not coherent enough to respond. “She is a Muslim now. What right do you have to see her?” questioned the security officers, who were growing increasingly angry during the meeting. The meeting lasted ten minutes, but not a sound was uttered from Mary’s lips.

Magda’s lawyer regrettably said there was nothing more he could do. “There was no case, he said, because Mary’s birth certificate had been forged and she is Muslim now,” explained Magda.

On a dreary February afternoon, the parents sat in a Cairo office, trying to understand a world where Mary did not exist. “We don’t even know if she’s still alive,” Magda told ICC.

Abductions of Christian girls are nothing new in Egypt. Records exist of cases that were filed as early as the 1970s. However, kidnappings have increased significantly since Egypt’s revolution last year. It is often the police – the very people that are trusted to uphold the law – who are responsible.

“I have proof there are corrupt police officers,” said Coptic lawyer Karam Gabriel, who had worked months to find 15-year-old Nabila Sedky, a Christian girl who was abducted in Cairo on April 5, 2011. “I gave the investigators tips where to look, information we got through three months of hard work, and instead they were [investigating] at a Coptic [Christian] with an alibi.”

Mary is only one among hundreds of Christian girls who have been abducted, forced to convert to Islam, and forced into marriage in Egypt. These incidents are often accompanied by acts of violence, including rape, beatings, and other forms of physical and mental abuse.

When Magda looks at the bed where Mary once slept, tears cloud her eyes. She says a silent prayer for her daughter and continues on with her day, believing that someday God will reunite them.

14 COMMENTS

  1. Moderate Islam, the alleged great majority in their religion, is either too afraid to say anything or somehow complicit. But for moderate Islam in free countries like the USA, France, India, etc., they can and must speak up! These extremists are not of God, they are of the devil. Evil is not of God. I say to Islam around the world, Christians and unbelievers are not the great satan you so often claim…. extremist Islam is the great satan. Deal with it or be prepared to be accountable to the one true God when you die.

    • There is no “moderate” Islam. Islam is a twisted, diabolical religion whose god is Satan. Mohammed is a false prophet. It is the only “religion” in the world that uses kidnapping and coercion to spread their “faith”. Our only consolation is that one day God will destroy Islam and the perverse doctrines that go with it. May that day come soon.

    • There’s no such a thing as “moderate Islam”.
      All those atrocities committed in the name of Islam are merely the carrying-out of direct orders in the Quran, or stem from the Sunna (sayings and deeds of Muhammad).
      What are the “moderate” Muslims going to say, “the holy texts are bull****!”?! “The teaching of Muhammad are terrorist and inhumane”?!

      Well, they could. But they wouldn’t be Muslims then, would they?

      Ex-Muslim

  2. Islam is a sick, evil and demented plague upon mankind.
    Muslims must be deported from the US and we must starve the oil rich muslim lands into collapse while we leaflet them with tracts encouraging
    conversion to Christianity.

  3. the problem to a muslem is the arab christian because their god can only speak arabic that’s why for long time they didn’t translate the poetic Quran book because it will lose its force as a poetic verses.until now it is hard for them to see a person speaking arabic and not being a muslem i mean the muslems living in middle east. i think many people will change their minds about this religion when they know how many women they can have on earth and what they will have in heaven more women and beautiful looking boys with the rivers of wine.but as Jesus said the gates of hell will not win.

  4. St.Joan of Arc,please pray for these victims of fanatical religious beliefs,and for their conversion.Open thieir eyes o’lord.St.Michael protect them.

  5. St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our protection against those who harm our children. May God rebuke them and stop them we humbly pray. And do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, through our Lord Jesus Christ, thrust into hell, Satan, and all his evil spirits, and all his helpers who wander through out the world seeking the ruin of lives and souls. Amen.

  6. We should all pray the Holy Rosary for Mary’s safe return to her family, and for those responsible for the kidnapping, that they will convert to Christanity.
    And let’s all pray the Divine Mercy for the same, at 3 p.m. Or we can all say the 9 day or 9 hour Novena to the Child Jesus of Prague. We can all help. Have Faith in her safe return!!!!!

  7. Islam is a very distorted religion, founded by a very mentally sick man. How these people are foolish enough to follow it in these time is beyond my conprehension. It’s almost like being possessed by evil spirits, or maybe that is what it is exactly.

  8. I’ve studied Islam since 9/11/2001, and I’ve discovered that Islam is a Crime Syndicate and not a religion. And I have also learned that Islam has practiced Criminal Activity for almost 1,400 years, i.e., killing apostates, legally raping underage little girls after forced marriages, stoning women to death, legally kidnapping girls, honor killings, and much more criminal activity. Islam will not change, and it will remain evil. Satan is the Muslim god, who is sometimes called Allah.

  9. Hi Guys,

    I’m Muslim and I’m so sorry for you. This group of Salafies don’t represent Islam peaceful values. We live in EGYPT Muslims and Christians in peace.

    Some comments generalize this case about all Muslims. That is not logic or acceptable. For example, from 2 years, Muslim wife had been killed at Germany and her 6 years son has seen that. We don’t says that all Germany people are bad or prejudiced.

    For more details about ISLAM: http://www.youtube.com/IslamInBrief

    Thanks

    • I agree that some of these remarks are inflammatory and too wide sweeping, I am sorry for that. But the real issue here is not “how do most Muslims act?” The issue is “Is Islam the message of the One True God” The issue is “Can Christianity and Islam both be correct and what God wants?” The issue is “Why do not moderate Muslims speak up more strongly against the tens of thousands of attacks by more extreme and violent Islamacists who are intolerable of anyone whom are not of their ideology?” It is these troubling questions and decades of terror and horror that has brought about such a distaste by those not of the Islamic fatih.

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