EIPR condemns closure of the Naga al-Ghafir church in Sohag by security and documents closure of 22 churches since enactment of the church construction law; demands reopening of closed churches and a decree regularizing the status of all churches that filed papers with the regularization committee
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The EIPR believes that such a decree would most faithfully enact the provisions of the church construction law, however flawed, as well as treat the causes of sectarian violence, which is largely rooted in bureaucratic obstruction and clear recalcitrance on the part of the security apparatus.
On September 28, 2016, Law 80/2016 was adopted to regulate the construction and renovation of churches and their annexes. State officials, parliamentarians, and some sectors of the Christian ecclesiastical leadership heralded the new law as a solution to the long-standing difficulties of building or renovating churches.