Condemning the terrorist attack at the St. Peter’s Church, attached to St. Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Cairo, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Security Council underlined that those responsible for the attack should be held accountable.

Throughout 2016, terror attacks have ripped apart small towns and big cities in the Middle East, Africa, and Europe. This weekend brought no respite. Three deadly blasts in major cities thousands of miles apart targeted sites where people gather for life’s daily rituals. Different groups claimed responsibility for two of the attacks, carrying them out in the name of different political and religious causes.

The explosion on Sunday, caused by a device containing at least 26 pounds of TNT, was carried out inside the chapel adjoining the main hall of the church, officials said. Mena Adel, a church member, told International Christian Concern, a persecution watchdog group, “The church bombing was planned and carried out meticulously. The explosion took place in the pews of the women.” In each of the three explosions, ordinary people paid the ultimate price, casualties of ongoing battles where there is no front line, no readily apparent uniform that denotes the combatants as friend or foe, and little anyone can do to ensure security.

“The brutal crime, which killed dozens of people and wounded many others is shocking by all means taking place near a church, a sacred place of worship where people of faith seek peace and comfort and share the values of compassion and tolerance,”

-read a UNAOC statement.

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