Egyptian Soldier, the Only Christian In His Unit, Found Dead on Military Base; Army Says It Was Suicide, But Was He Killed for His Faith?

Bahaa Silvanus was found dead. The Egyptian Army is calling it a suicide while relatives say he was killed for his faith. (YouTube)
Bahaa Silvanus was found dead. The Egyptian Army is calling it a suicide while relatives say he was killed for his faith. (YouTube)

The facts are these: Bahaa Gamal Mikhail Silvanus, 23 and a conscript in the Egyptian Army, was found dead June 24 in a chair in the office of the military base where he was stationed. There were two bullet wounds in his chest, and a gun at his feet.

One more fact: Silvanus was a Christian, the only one in his unit stationed at Suez.

The Army says Silvanus killed himself. His family, friends and church pastors don’t believe it, for two reasons: First, they say, Bahaa Silvanus was a happy man with a strong faith, a college degree in music and plans to enter the monastic life.

Second: Someone who kills himself with a gun never shoots more than once.

The Army—and the Egyptian media—have said little publicly about the death of Silvanus. Meanwhile, hundreds of people attended his funeral June 25 in Silvanus’ hometown of Rezkit Deir Al-Muharraq, in the Assiut Governorate in Upper Egypt. The family is demanding a government investigation into his death.

“My son was killed by someone. He didn’t kill himself,” said his father, Gamal Silvanus.

The elder Silvanus was not in Egypt when he learned his son was dead. He was in Kuwait, where his job is located. It was his cousin, Milad Fekry, who delivered the news.

“An officer belonging to the intelligence (service) visited us in the village,” Fekry said, “and he was investigating about Bahaa. He visited Bahaa’s home and saw his room.”

The officer looked over the musical instruments and asked questions: Did Bahaa Silvanus have any enemies? Had he argued with anyone recently? How was his state of mind? Fekry told World Watch Monitor the family thought maybe their boy was being checked out for musical duty somewhere in the Army, possibly close to the president. They asked the officer directly: Why all the questions? “He answered nothing,” Fekry said.


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SOURCE: World Watch Monitor

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