Egypt’s Coptic Pope Tawadros II on Monday led a funeral service for 23 people killed one day earlier in a deadly bombing near Cairo’s main Coptic cathedral.
On Sunday, a bomb went off inside St. Peter’s Church in central Cairo.
St. Peter’s is located adjacent to St. Mark’s Cathedral, which serves as the seat of Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox Church and the papal residence.
No group has yet claimed responsibility for Sunday’s attack, which also left dozens of people injured.
At Monday’s funeral ceremony, the wooden coffins of the victims were laid out in front of the altar of eastern Cairo’s Virgin Mary and St. Athanasius Church.
Only victims’ relatives and ranking church officials were allowed to attend the ceremony, which was held amid tight security.
Security forces sealed off all routes to the church in which the ceremony was held, with security personnel checking the IDs of all passersby, according to eyewitnesses.
Sunday’s church attack came two days after six policemen were killed in a bomb blast that shook Egypt’s capital on Friday.
The Egyptian authorities declared a three-day mourning period in the wake of the church bombing, which has drawn a storm of condemnations from across the Muslim-majority country.
Coptic Christians are estimated to account for between 8 and 10 percent of Egypt’s population of about 90 million.