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Cairo takes urgent measures to combat terrorism after church bombings

In the wake of the Palm Sunday church bombings, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and parliament took several steps amending internal laws that confront terrorism, but many doubt the ability of these measures to halt terrorist attacks.
Relatives mourn the victims of the Palm Sunday bombings during the funeral at the Monastery of Saint Mina "Deir Mar Mina" in Alexandria, Egypt April 10, 2017. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh - RTX34XXC
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CAIRO — Terrorism struck Egypt once again on April 9, on Palm Sunday, when two bombings targeted St. George’s Church in Tanta and Saint Mark’s Church in Alexandria, killing 48 people and injuring dozens. In the aftermath, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi took a series of urgent measures. He declared a three-month state of emergency as well as the formation of a supreme council to fight terrorism and extremism in Egypt. In addition, the parliament is in the process of amending four laws related to prosecuting terrorists, amendments that were approved during an April 10 parliament session. The Egypt Support Coalition — Egypt’s majority parliamentary bloc — is putting new legislation in place to protect public facilities and worship places.

Al-Monitor attended the April 10 general parliamentary session held to amend four laws related to prosecuting terrorists. The members of parliament underlined during the session the need for a comprehensive strategy that includes new ways to combat terrorism in Egypt.

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