By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
(Worthy News) - Egypt’s president says he will not extend the nationwide state of emergency imposed in April 2017 after church bombings and attacks on Coptic Christians killed more than 100 people.
President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi claims “Egypt has become an oasis of security and stability in the region” more than four years after the anti-Christian violence, which also injured dozens.
The government extended the state of emergency every three months after that. That order allows for arrests without warrants, the swift prosecution of suspects, and the establishment of special courts.
The emergency measure technically ended over the weekend, the president’s announcement confirmed.
Critics of the government said the powers were used to counter both Islamic extremists and political dissent.
It was not immediately clear what impact the less strict security measures would have on minority Christians in this mainly Muslim country which suffered several Islamist attacks.
However, local Christians, who make up 10 percent of the population of Egypt, said their situation has improved.
The president is reportedly ready to legalize churches following the repeal of Ottoman-era restrictions in September 2016.
Al-Azhar University now controls most mosques, and Christians say the extremist Muslim Brotherhood has become less influential.