A shootout outside of a church in Cairo on December 29, where at least ten people died, did not faze the locals as they brave the incident to celebrate the New Year and the upcoming Orthodox Christmas celebrations of January 7, 2018.
People gathered in the streets, to take pictures of the Christmas tree and to mark the beginning of 2018. Residents say fearing will only encourage the evil trends.
“ They won’t win if of course we celebrate. They are not courageous, they do this because [they want] to let us fear, to let us not go to the streets and celebrate. Of course I have to encourage my friends, my family, my church. We’re going to celebrate on the 7th of January. Egyptian people like celebrating all of the time, all of the time, I think nothing will affect us,” said a local youth, Sandy Sameh.
They won't win if of course we celebrate. They are not courageous, they do this because [they want] to let us fear, to let us not go to the streets and celebrate.
Grabbing a picture with the new year signs or the Christmas tree is probably the only free activity in Egypt’s capital this year as the government didn’t organize any public celebration this year.
“It’s a very important celebration for all Egyptians, (no matter) Muslims or Christians. I spent it at home, I got my Christmas tree, and I also have a Santa at home. I couldn’t go out this year, but there’s plenty to be done at home, a lot of fun activities with the family could be enjoyable. We enjoyed it,” said Gamela Abdel Mohsen, a Cairo resident.
Private parties costing 70 to 800 U.S. dollars per person were alternatives, but since it equals to more than eight months’ salary for the average Egyptian, many locals decided to celebrate at home.