UM-Dearborn junior in Cairo awakened by machine gun fire - New York News

UM-Dearborn junior in Cairo awakened by machine gun fire

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Hana Mattar Hana Mattar
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (WJBK) -

Hana Mattar, a junior at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, is visiting her parents in Cairo. They are fortunately inside a gated community.

"This morning we woke up to machine gun shots," she said by phone. "We found out that the security that protects our compound and the checkpoint, they were shot at. One of them was shot, and no one knows who has done it because there was just these armed men in a car. It's just insane."

"People cannot leave their houses. People are locked up in their homes," said Father Mark Ibrahim.

The priests of St. Mark's Coptic Orthodox Church in Troy are closely watching the tragedy unfolding in their homeland. 600 families of Egyptian descent worship at their parish.

"All of us here have loved ones in Egypt," said Father Mina Essak. "Churches are burned. Convents are attacked. Nuns are running away seeking shelter."

The clash between the Muslim Brotherhood and the military has left more than 600 dead with the Brotherhood declaring a "Day of Rage" after such a large loss of life.

Wayne State Professor Saeed Kahn said it is a war between the military's attempt to return to a military state and the Brotherhood's pro-democracy stance.

"Many of these people are pro-democratic process, and they're protesting the subversion of a legitimate election," he said.

However, the priests disagree, calling the Brotherhood a terrorist organization determined to destroy Egypt.

President Obama has condemned the military attacks on the Muslim Brotherhood. The U.S. is in a difficult position politically, supplying more than a billion dollars in military and economic aid to Egypt, a long and important ally in the Middle East.

"An unstable Egypt is going to be something that is of great concern to the United States, partly because of the fact that so many in the Arab world look at Egypt for guidance," Kahn said.

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