The Christian Post website reports today (December 31, 2010) that Egypt is considering changing its policy on the construction of new churches by making all houses of worship equal in the eyes of the law.
State minister for legal and parliamentary affairs Moufid Shihab said the government is discussing with Coptic Church leaders a potential "unified law on houses of worship" that would give churches and mosques the same legal rights.
Currently, not only is it almost impossible for Christians to build new churches in Egypt, but also difficult to repair existing buildings. Permission requests for church construction or repair take years -- given the roundabout bureaucratic procedures -- and usually end up being denied.
On the other hand, Muslims can build new mosques or repair existing ones freely in Egypt without having to obtain permits.