Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Episcopal mission partner leaves Egypt temporarily

From ENS-

At the request of the Episcopal Church and due to the heightened security risks for Westerners residing in Egypt, the Rev. Paul-Gordon Chandler has temporarily left Cairo, where he has served as priest of an international Episcopal church since 2003.

Chandler says he hopes to return soon to his home in the Maadi district of Cairo, once the situation becomes less volatile.

On Feb. 7, anti-government demonstrations continued into their 14th day as the country's leaders and members of opposition movements met to discuss the possibility of political reform. President Hosni Mubarak announced Feb. 1 that he would not seek re-election when his term ends in November, but opponents and protestors are calling for his immediate resignation.

The government talks have included members of the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamist political activist movement that is officially banned in Egypt.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4, Anglican Bishop Mouneer Anis of the Diocese of Egypt said, "There is no harm in having dialogue with all the groups and listening to all the groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood." But, he said, the hope is that all people in Egypt would have the freedom to practice any religion. Ani said that it was unclear where the Muslim Brotherhood stood on this issue.

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