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Washington (AFP) – The United States condemned Monday an attack on a Cairo church in which four Coptic Christians were killed, and backed Egyptian calls for those behind the shootings to be brought to justice.

“We strongly condemn the heinous attack on the Al-Adra church in Cairo,” State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said.

“We’re going to keep making the point that this kind of violence has no place in moving Egypt forward. It will only hinder Egypt’s democratic transition process and economic recovery,” she told journalists.

Thousands turned out Monday for the funerals of the four people killed Sunday when the gunmen opened fire on the Church of the Virgin in Cairo’s working class Al-Warrak neighborhood.

Relatives said all four victims were members of the same family and included two girls aged eight and 12.

Witnesses recounted how celebrations quickly turned into horror as the attackers sped towards the wedding party on a motorbike, sprayed the crowd with bullets and fled.

“We’re supporting calls by the Egyptian government to hold those responsible accountable for this attack,” Harf added.

Photo by Mediamodifier from Pixabay

Reprinted with permission from TomDispatch

When it rains, pieces of glass, pottery, and metal rise through the mud in the hills surrounding my Maryland home. The other day, I walked outside barefoot to fetch one of my kid's shoes and a pottery shard stabbed me in the heel. Nursing a minor infection, I wondered how long that fragment dated back.

A neighbor of mine found what he said looked like a cartridge case from an old percussion-cap rifle in his pumpkin patch. He told us that the battle of Monocacy had been fought on these grounds in July 1864, with 1,300 Union and 900 Confederate troops killed or wounded here. The stuff that surfaces in my fields when it storms may or may not be battle artifacts, but it does remind me that the past lingers and that modern America was formed in a civil war.

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