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Parliamentary questions
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21 September 2018
Question for written answer E-004776-18
to the Commission (Vice-President/High Representative)
Rule 130
Jonathan Arnott (EFDD)

 Subject:  VP/HR — Church registration in Egypt
 Answer in writing 

In Egypt, a total of 3 510 church buildings are still awaiting confirmation of official registration from authorities nearly two years after the government passed a landmark law which abolished draconian Ottoman-era restrictions on Christian places of worship.

The committee set up to assess church registration applications was created in May 2017, with its first meeting in October 2017, and has so far only approved 220 (5.8%) of the 3 730 applications.

This bureaucratic hampering of Christians practising their faith is a serious issue and signifies a subtle, repressive approach to the persecution of Christians in the region.

At a local level, Christians continue to experience violent opposition to attempts to get official recognition for church buildings, even when congregations have been meeting in the same location for a number of years.

Can the VP/HR please confirm that she is aware of this situation?

Will the VP/HR raise this issue with her Egyptian counterparts in their next discussions?

Can an update be provided on any action currently being taken to raise this issue through diplomatic channels?

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