By BosNewsLife Africa Service
BENGHAZI, LIBYA (BosNewsLife)– The World Evangelical Alliance (WEA) urged prayers Friday, February 28, after the bodies of seven Egyptian Christians were found on a beach in a suburb east of Benghazi, Libya’ssecond largest city.
All victims were Egyptians working in Libya, confirmed the Religious Liberty Commission of the WEA, which claims to represent some 600 million evangelical Christians in 128 countries.
“According to reports, the bodies were found [Sunday February 23] with gunshot wounds to the head, indicating execution-style killings,” the group said in a statement to BosNewsLife.
An area resident and an Egyptian worker reportedly told local police that unknown gunmen had arrived at the
Egyptians’ home in Benghazi and dragged them away the night before.
No group immediately claimed responsibility and no further details were immediately available about how they were killed or whether they were shot on the beach.
MORE FOREIGNERS KILLED
Last month, a British man and a New Zealand woman were reportedly shot execution-style on another beach 100 km (60 miles) to the west of Libya’s capital Tripoli.
Assassinations and abductions have become common in Libya over the past 18 months. Many of the attacks
are thought to be carried out by Islamist militant groups and criminals who have been at large since Libya’s prisons were emptied in 2011, Christians said.
Three years after the revolution that ousted Muammar Gaddafi, Libya’s weak government and army also struggles to control these groups, in a nation awash with weapons.
WEA said it had urged its supporters to “pray for the families grieving the loss of their loved ones” and for “God’s protection over all Christians residing in Libya.”
Additionally it was crucial to “Pray that the anarchy and violence in Libya will come to an end” and that “God would grant repentance to those responsible of carrying out this heinous crime,” WEA said.
The latest violence has added to concerns within Libya’s tiny Christian community amid rising Islamic extremism in this heavily Muslim African nation.