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Egypt's Orthodox Christians celebrate Christmas amid tight security 

An Egyptian Coptic Priest leads the Christmas mass at the Archangel Michael Coptic Orthodox Church in Cairo on January 6, 2022 [KHALED DESOUKI/AFP via Getty Images]
An Egyptian Coptic Priest leads the Christmas mass at the Archangel Michael Coptic Orthodox Church in Cairo on January 6, 2022 [KHALED DESOUKI/AFP via Getty Images]

Orthodox Egyptian churches yesterday marked Christmas amid intense security measures.

The leader of the Coptic Orthodox Church, Pope Tawadros II, led the Christmas Mass in the cathedral of the Nativity of Christ in Cairo's new capital.

The service was attended by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi who delivered a message of unity between the country's Muslim majority and the Christian community.

"Don't let anyone come between us or sow sedition," Al-Sisi said, calling on God to help him to be an "honest and trustworthy servant for the nation and you."

"This country is ours and it's big enough for all of us," he added.

Coptic Orthodox sects, the largest sect in Egypt, celebrate Christmas on 7 January.

Since December 2017, Egyptian authorities have tightened security measures around churches during Christmas celebrations following several church attacks that left dozens dead.

Around 15 million Christians call Egypt home, according to official data.

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