RELIGION

Egypt Christians stage rare Cairo protest, demanding rights

  • Egyptians protest against the latest surge of assaults on Christians in Cairo, Egypt, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. Egyptian Christians have staged a rare protest in downtown Cairo to demand the government uphold their rights, saying they are sorely lacking and they are treated as second-class citizens in the Muslim-majority country. Arabic on the sign at right reads, "no to pressure on victims for reconciliation," at center, "yes to nationalism and no to extremism." (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)

    Egyptians protest against the latest surge of assaults on Christians in Cairo, Egypt, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. Egyptian Christians have staged a rare protest in downtown Cairo to demand the government uphold their rights, saying they are sorely lacking and they are treated as second-class citizens in the Muslim-majority country. Arabic on the sign at right reads, "no to pressure on victims for reconciliation," at center, "yes to nationalism and no to extremism." (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)  (The Associated Press)

  • Egyptian police try to break up a protest against the latest surge of assaults on Christians in Cairo, Egypt, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. Egyptian Christians have staged a rare protest in downtown Cairo to demand the government uphold their rights, saying they are sorely lacking and they are treated as second-class citizens in the Muslim-majority country. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)

    Egyptian police try to break up a protest against the latest surge of assaults on Christians in Cairo, Egypt, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. Egyptian Christians have staged a rare protest in downtown Cairo to demand the government uphold their rights, saying they are sorely lacking and they are treated as second-class citizens in the Muslim-majority country. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)  (The Associated Press)

  • Egyptians protest against the latest surge of assaults on Christians in Cairo, Egypt, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. Egyptian Christians have staged a rare protest in downtown Cairo to demand the government uphold their rights, saying they are sorely lacking and they are treated as second-class citizens in the Muslim-majority country. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)

    Egyptians protest against the latest surge of assaults on Christians in Cairo, Egypt, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. Egyptian Christians have staged a rare protest in downtown Cairo to demand the government uphold their rights, saying they are sorely lacking and they are treated as second-class citizens in the Muslim-majority country. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)  (The Associated Press)

Egyptian Christians have staged a rare protest in downtown Cairo to demand the government uphold their rights, saying they are being treated as second-class citizens in the Muslim-majority country.

Standing on the steps of a courthouse Saturday, some three dozen demonstrators braved Egypt's draconian protest ban to hold signs aloft, calling for their legal rights to be upheld in disputes between Muslims and Christians.

Christians make up some ten percent of Egypt's 91 million people. They sided overwhelmingly with Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi when he overthrew an Islamist president in 2013, paving his way to the presidency. But some have recently voiced concerns that their lot has not improved under the former general, despite his promises.