Local Egyptian-American woman reacts to turmoil in Egypt

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SAN DIEGO – An Egyptian-American from San Diego shared her view on Egyptian military crackdown that has resulted in the bloodiest day since the 2011 revolution that ousted President Hosni Mubarak.
Jacqueline Isaac is the vice president of “Roads of Success,” a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing human rights in the Middle East. She said watching the violent news coverage every day is unbearable.
“My aunt lives right where the protest is,” said Isaac. “[Christians in Egypt] are being persecuted day in and day out.”Christians in Egypt are a minority group, making up about 10 percent of the population.

Egypt turmoilSince the Egyptian pope sided with the military to oust President Mohammed Morsi, Isaac said Christians have been living with bulls’-eyes on their heads.  As a result, church officials said more than 50 churches have been attacked since Wednesday.

Isaac said innocent people are living in fear.

“Every Egyptian has a right to go out on the street and feel safe,” said Isaac. “And right now, it’s not happening.”

Military officials claimed they warned pro-Morsi protesters to leave using non-lethal water canons and tear gas.

On the other hand, Muslim Brotherhood members claimed the military suddenly shot at them during a peaceful sit-in.

“You see these protestors, what they call these peaceful sit-ins, they’re not peaceful at all,” said Isaac. “If you take a look at the areas of these squares, they are so dangerous. The number of weapons that are coming in, snipers that are on the roofs that are killing innocent people, the military sees it as a serious threat to their national security.”

The Health Ministry said in the last six weeks of protests, more than 600 people have been killed and nearly 4,000 injured – a number President Barack Obama couldn’t ignore, even while on vacation.

“The cycle of violence and escalation needs to stop,” Obama said. “We call on the Egyptian authorities to respect the universal rights of the people, and we call on those who protest to do so peacefully.”

Isaac agreed. She said this revolution was launched in the name of freedom, social dignity and democracy, but it has spiraled into total turmoil.

She prays for the day where all Egyptians can walk on the streets and feel safe again.

“We’re standing against terrorism,” said Isaac. “This is not a Muslim vs. Christian thing. This is an Egyptian thing. The Egyptians are standing together saying there is a big difference in religion and terrorism and we will no longer accept it.”

Isaac’s organization “Roads of Success” just sent a 40-foot container full of donated American medical supplies to Egypt.  The organization welcomes volunteers and donations.

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