Egypt’s new ambassador to Israel, Khaled Azmy, started his diplomatic mission on Tuesday by visiting the Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church in Jerusalem, according to a statement by the Foreign Ministry spokesperson Ahmed Hafez.
Azmy and the embassy’s delegation were received by Bishop Antonios, the prelate of the Jerusalem chair and Near East. The ambassadors offered their condolences for the victims of the Minya attack in Egypt last week, stressing that terrorism will never succeed in dividing Egyptians. He praised the national role of the Coptic Church.
The visit comes two weeks after the Israeli assault against the Deir Al-Sultan Monastery monks in front of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, in the Old City of East Jerusalem, and detaining one of the priests, who was released after that.
Azmy stressed the right of the Egyptian Church in Deir Al-Sultan Monastery.
Two weeks ago, Israeli soldiers assaulted Egyptian monks in the Deir Al-Sultan Monastery, after their demonstration against an Israeli decision which denies the church has the right to conduct the needed renovation work inside the monastery, which is located on the roof of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
The Egyptian Copts rejected any amendments on the roof of the monastery from the Israeli side or the Ethiopian Coptic Church which claims ownership of the Egyptian monastery.
Egypt has historical rights in the Deir Al-Sultan Monastery in Jerusalem since the holy site was gifted to the Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church by Sultan Salah Al-Din Al-Ayouby after he liberated Jerusalem from the crusaders in 1187. Egyptian monks have been living at the monastery for over 200 years.