The Coptic Church announced that at least 41 people were killed and 14 others injured in a fire that erupted at an Egyptian church west of Cairo early on Sunday.
Egypt’s state news agency reported that the fire broke out in Abu Sefein Church in the Greater Cairo district of Imbaba as a service was underway.
Citing Health Ministry officials, the Coptic Church reported the death toll.
Meanwhile, the Interior Ministry said the blaze was caused by a short circuit.
30 ambulances were dispatched to the scene to transfer the victims to nearby hospitals, Health Ministry spokesperson Hossam Abdel-Ghaffar said.
During a phone call with Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria and the head of the Coptic Orthodox Church, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi extended condolences.
Presidential spokesperson Bassam Rady indicated that Sisi said all state institutions are providing the required support to contain the effects of the tragic incident.
According to unofficial estimates, Coptic Christians make up around 15 percent of Egypt’s 100 million population.