Middle East

Homes burnt in southern Egypt Muslim-Christian violence

An Egyptian Coptic Orthodox church is seen beneath a decorated lantern in the town of Nagaa Hamady, in Qena, southern Egypt
Image caption Egypt's Christian community represents some 10% of the population

At least 10 houses have been burnt down in a confrontation between Christians and Muslims in southern Egypt.

No one was injured in the attack, the latest flare-up between Egypt's majority Muslims and Christians, who make up some 10% of the population.

The cause is believed to be rumours of a relationship between a Coptic Christian man and a Muslim woman.

The authorities say the remote village, in the south of the country, has now been cordoned off.

The incident is a symptom of the wider tensions between the two communities, where rumours are quick to spread, and both sides fear attack by the other.

The situation in Egypt was even cited by those who carried out an attack on a church in Iraq recently, causing heavy loss of life.

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