Two little boys ran down a back street in Imbaba, a poor Cairo suburb. They were covered in dust and had matted black hair. The street was potholed and bordered by piles of rancid garbage. One child, under five, stood in front of me and repeatedly tapped the underside of his wrist and the area beside his thumb. That’s where Coptic Christians usually have a small tattoo. I showed him my wrist, no tattoo, and only then did he affirm boldly that he was Sunni. His younger brother said he was Sunni too.
-Glen Johnson is a New Zealand journalist; Farida Helmy, an Egyptian journalist, contributed to the reporting
(1) “Two Years of Sectarian Violence: What happened? Where do we begin?”, Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, Cairo, 2010.