Reporting from Cairo and Juba, Sudan — An off-duty policeman opened fire aboard a train Tuesday in southern Egypt, killing one Christian and wounding five less than two weeks after the New Year's Day bombing at a church in Alexandria that killed 25 Coptic Christians, according to the state news agency.
There were few details on the incident and it was unclear whether the shooting was sectarian related. The state news agency, MENA, quoted an Interior Ministry official as saying a Muslim police officer boarded a Cairo-bound train in the town of Samalut in Minya province and began firing a handgun. The official said a 71-year-old Coptic man was killed and his wife and four other Christians — three women and a man — were wounded.
The policeman, Amer Ashour Abdel Zaher, fled but was arrested later. The train originated in Asyut, which like Samalut has a large Christian community.
The shooting comes as Copts are on edge over what they view as the government's inability to heal the nation's sectarian divide and stop a spate of extremist violence. Egypt's Christian community is still shaken from the bombing at All Saints Church in Alexandria.