On February 2, 2022, the Egyptian Front for Human Rights monitored that the Supreme State Security Prosecution imprisoned Mounir Samir Mounir Halim, known as Marco Samir (23 years old), for 15 days,in case No. 65/ 2022, State security on accusations of involving with others in a gathering that affects the public authority, and threaten public peace, in addition to committing a terrorist act intended to endanger the public security, which came on the background of his involvement and others in a demonstration in front of the Diocese of Samalut in Al-Minya Governance on January 22 and 23 to demand the construction of a church in Ezbet Faraj Allah, instead of other churches which was burned. Notably, the demonstration carried slogans, such as: “We want to build a church,” “If you don’t build a church, we will stay in the street.”
Samir was arrested on January 30, 2022, from his home, by the police and national security forces. Then, they took him to the National Security headquarters in Al-Minya, Samalout police station, and the State Security Prosecution.
According to witnesses who confirmed to the Egyptian front, others were arrested from Ezbet Farag Allah Delqam, Samalut, Al-Minya Governorate due to the same gathering on January 22 and 23, 2022. In addition, the crowd (which included approx. 70 people) aimed to put pressure on the authorities to facilitate building the church. Father Daoud calmed them down on this day and promised them to end the procedures soon. It is worth noting that the closest church they go to pray in is approximately 6 km away from their district. These demonstrations came after Cabinet Decision No. 16/ 2021, published in the Official Gazette in July 2021 to reconcile the status of several churches. Among these decisions was the demolition of St. Joseph Church and Abu Sefein Church after burning in 2016, while no other decision was issued to build alternative churches.