A bus full of South Korean Christians who saved money for years in order to visit biblical sites in Egypt and Israel were attacked Sunday by a suicide bomber.
This is not the first time South Korean Christians have been the target of violence in a foreign country. In 2007, after a 43-day hostage situation left two South Korean missionaries dead in Afghanistan, South Korea subsequently banned citizens from traveling to certain majority-Muslim countries—which proved to be a blessing in disguise for Korean Christians.
This time, the 31 churchgoers on the bus came from a Presbyterian church south of Seoul, as they were touring biblical sites in commemoration of the church’s 60th anniversary of its founding.
“No one has claimed responsibility for the blast, which bore the hallmarks of attacks blamed on al-Qaida-linked militant groups that have been battling government forces in Sinai’s restive north for years,” the AP reports.
On Sunday, the church group was about to enter Israel from the Egyptian border town of Taba after visiting an ancient monastery in Sinai. The group had left South Korea last Monday on its 12-day tour of Israel, Egypt, and Turkey.
”My mother was a devout Christian,” the dead church member’s daughter, surnamed Yoon, told South Korea’s Yonhap news agency. ”I don’t know how such a thing could happen. I don’t know how to react to this.”
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