Pope Francis' visit to Egypt draws closer but concerns continue to mount about the safety of the religious leader following last week's Palm Sunday attacks.
Last weekend, bombers targeted Coptic Christians on Palm Sunday, killing 44 people in twin attacks on churches in two different cities.
The explosions prompted Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sissi to declare a three-month state of emergency and promise to protect the religious minority.
Coptic Christians are the largest religious minority in the Middle East – but also the most persecuted.
Coptic Christians are the largest religious minority in the Middle East – but also most persecuted
Last weekend, bombers targeted Coptic Christians on Palm Sunday
The ancient religious minority make up about 10 per cent of the country's population – compared to 85 per cent Muslim.
At the end of this month, Pope Francis will visit Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II.
Francis will also be visiting Egyptian officials, the Catholic community, and Muslim leaders during his short visit.
This morning, a Fox News television anchor asked whether people should start to "worry" for the safety of Pope Francis as he prepares to visit Egypt on the 28th April.
ISIS has declared Coptic Christians in Egypt their "favourite prey"
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ISIS have declared Egyptian Christians their favourite prey
He asked Hudson Institute senior fellow Nina Shea if Egypt could be trusted to keep Pope Francis safe from terror.
She said: "That is such high visibility that they will probably do a good job with that.
"But he needs to communicate to Al-Azhar, the Sunni centre of learning, that Islam does not kill infidels.
"He needs to do all he can to protect the Coptics."
Mrs Shea went on to reveal that the Coptic Pope's life was in grave danger, having already been the target of two attacks.
Christians in the country have been forced to scale back Easter celebrations following the bloody terror attacks last week.
In February, ISIS declared Coptic Christians in Egypt their "favourite prey".
Pope Francis will visit Egypt on April 28th
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Pope Francis receives a parrot from a performer of the Golden Circus during his Wednesday general audience in Paul VI Hall at the Vatican
The militant group has made it clear their goal is to "purify" the country of Christians, against whom they have enacted a genocide.
There are nine million Coptic Christians throughout the world but analysts claim the persecution is "the worst it has ever been".
This comes after a recent Pew Poll found that 74 per cent of Egyptians wants to be ruled under Sharia Law, according to Mrs Shea.
She said: "The Egyptian government has been incompetent in protecting them and even actively discriminates against them."
The religious scholar said the daily threat on their lives mean that any Coptic Christian who can get out of Egypt tries to.
Dr. Hellyer, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, said the state of affairs was "the worst it has ever been".
Steven Cook, from the Council on Foreign Relations, added: "They have never been targeted in the way that they are now.
"Egypt is extremely dangerous for Copts in ways it hasn't been dangerous before."
He added: "There's also a very ideological element to it — like their attacks against Shiites and Christians in Iraq — they want to purge the land."