Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Egypt court to try Copts abroad over anti-Islam film

Seven Egyptian Coptic Christians living abroad and a US pastor will be tried by a criminal court for insulting Islam over a film made in California which mocks the Prophet Mohammad, Egypt's public prosecutor said on Tuesday.

The Egyptians include US-based Morris Sadek who has said he promoted the film that provoked outrage in the Muslims world.

Florida Pastor Terry Jones, who angered Muslims in 2010 by threatening to burn the Koran and who has expressed support for the film, is also accused.

The public prosecutor said in a statement that convictions could be punishable by the death penalty and called for the seven Copts and Jones to be handed over to Egypt, but did not say in which the countries the Copts were.

A judicial source said two Egyptian lawyers had raised the suit with the public prosecutor, who referred the case to a criminal court on Tuesday. The court will set a date for the trial, the source added.

Anger at the film has stretched across the Middle East, Asia and Africa. In several cities, protesters attacked US embassies, blaming America for the video. In Egypt, protesters clambered over the embassy wall and tore down the US flag, and clashed with police in streets nearby for four days.


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