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Amnesty International urges release of Egyptian Christian teacher held over anti-Islam remarks

  • Egyptians chant slogans as a man burns the Israeli flag during an anti-Israel protest held after the Friday noon prayer at Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, May 10, 2013. Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood staged an anti-Israel rally in Cairo on Friday, the first such protest by the main backers of President Mohammed Morsi since they rose to prominence in the wake of the country's 2011 uprising. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

    Egyptians chant slogans as a man burns the Israeli flag during an anti-Israel protest held after the Friday noon prayer at Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, May 10, 2013. Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood staged an anti-Israel rally in Cairo on Friday, the first such protest by the main backers of President Mohammed Morsi since they rose to prominence in the wake of the country's 2011 uprising. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)  (The Associated Press)

  • An Egyptian man chants slogans as he hold a shoe with an Israeli flag drawn on it during an anti-Israel protest held after the Friday noon prayer at Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, May 10, 2013. Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood staged an anti-Israel rally in Cairo on Friday, the first such protest by the main backers of President Mohammed Morsi since they rose to prominence in the wake of the country's 2011 uprising. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

    An Egyptian man chants slogans as he hold a shoe with an Israeli flag drawn on it during an anti-Israel protest held after the Friday noon prayer at Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, May 10, 2013. Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood staged an anti-Israel rally in Cairo on Friday, the first such protest by the main backers of President Mohammed Morsi since they rose to prominence in the wake of the country's 2011 uprising. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)  (The Associated Press)

  • A boy plays in front men praying, background, during the Friday noon prayer in Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, May 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

    A boy plays in front men praying, background, during the Friday noon prayer in Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, May 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)  (The Associated Press)

Amnesty International has called on Egyptian authorities to release a Coptic Christian schoolteacher held for contempt of Islam.

The rights group on Friday denounced the detention of 24-year-old Dimiana Abdel-Nour, a social studies teacher in a southern village near the famed city of Luxor. She was accused by some students of allegedly showing contempt while talking about Islam in class last month.

Luxor prosecutor issued an arrest warrant against Abdel-Nour this week over allegations of proselytizing and of "defamation of religion." A court is scheduled to look into her detention on Saturday.

Amnesty's Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui says it's "outrageous that a teacher finds herself behind bars for teaching a class" and that if Abdel-Nour had made a "professional mistake or deviated from the curriculum, an internal review would have sufficed."