Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Recent attacks on religious minorities in Egypt and in Malaysia

Delivered in Plenary - 21st January 2010

Mr President

Sadly there has been a general climate in the Islamic world of increasing jihadi militancy aimed at non-Muslim communities in their midst – in particular, and more often than not, this means the Christians.

The Copts, who represent one of the oldest Christian churches in the world, have a large diaspora in London, which I represent. Their leaders have come to me and complained of a worsening situation, regrettably, in Egypt, orchestrated by the Muslim Brotherhood. In spite of the best efforts by President Mubarak’s government to protect them, matters have deteriorated.

We witness a similar story with the Assyrian Christians in Iraq, the Christians of Palestine and Pakistan, and now, as we see for the first time, even in Malaysia.

This House has – for too long, in my view – ignored Christian minority rights in the rest of the world, but they look to the European Union and to the United States for protection. So I welcome this resolution.