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US condemns 'heinous' Egypt church attack

Egyptian Copts carry a coffin down the aisle of the Virgin Mary Coptic Christian church in Cairo's working class neighbourhood of Al-Warrak, on October 21, 2013
Egyptian Copts carry a coffin down the aisle of the Virgin Mary Coptic Christian church in Cairo's working class neighbourhood of Al-Warrak, on October 21, 2013

The United States condemned Monday an attack on a Cairo church in which four Coptic Christians were killed, and backed Egyptian calls for those behind the shootings to be brought to justice.

"We strongly condemn the heinous attack on the Al-Adra church in Cairo," State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said.

"We're going to keep making the point that this kind of violence has no place in moving Egypt forward. It will only hinder Egypt's democratic transition process and economic recovery," she told journalists.

Thousands turned out Monday for the funerals of the four people killed Sunday when the gunmen opened fire on the Church of the Virgin in Cairo's working class Al-Warrak neighborhood.

Relatives said all four victims were members of the same family and included two girls aged eight and 12.

Witnesses recounted how celebrations quickly turned into horror as the attackers sped towards the wedding party on a motorbike, sprayed the crowd with bullets and fled.

"We're supporting calls by the Egyptian government to hold those responsible accountable for this attack," Harf added.

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