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Egyptian Christians in rare celebration of return of kidnapped student

Middle East and North Africa

Egyptian Christians in rare celebration of return of kidnapped student

Celebration of the return of a kidnapped young woman. Photo credit: http://copticocc.org

Christians in Egypt have a rare event to celebrate – the surprise return of a young woman who was kidnapped from the town of Zefta on 24 May.

The 20-year-old, Amany Magdi was abducted on her way to her final exam at Benha University. Her parents and worried friends reported her disappearance to police who told them that Amany had converted to Islam and refused to see them.

Dozens of Christians protested in the town’s streets calling for her safe return but it wasn’t until a month later that Amany returned home. On 24 June she called her family and told them she was returning.  Her overjoyed father carried her on his shoulders through the streets of the town after the family reunion. Details of Amany’s kidnapping are not yet widely known. The family said it would announce them later.

According to persecuted church agency Barnabas Fund, scores of Christian girls are kidnapped in Egypt each year, before being forced to convert to Islam and marry a Muslim man. Among those taken this year are Rasha Khalaf Thabet, 18, who was seen being forced into a car while on her way to visit her grandfather on 8 April.

Missing Coptic woman back home