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24 December 2014 – The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) has strongly condemned the murder of an Egyptian Coptic doctor and his wife in the city of Sirte, as well as the abduction of the couple’s 18-year-old daughter, in the latest spate of sectarian violence in the North African country.
“These heinous murders, apparently committed for religious motives by unidentified gunmen, are totally rejected by the Libyan people and are alien to their tradition of tolerance towards religious minorities and hospitality extended to foreign guests,” the Mission said in a statement issued today.
The Mission called on the authorities, along with influential actors in both civil and religious society, to swiftly intervene and ensure that the abducted girl is freed unharmed. It also called for a thorough investigation into the murders and for the perpetrators to be brought to justice.
Earlier this year in February, the bodies of seven Egyptian Coptic Christians were found near Benghazi while, during the same month, another group of over 30 Egyptian Copts were reportedly abducted and tortured in Benghazi before being released a few days later.