Retired Egyptian General Ahmed Ragai Attiya first raised the suspicions, accusing the monks of changing the topography of the monastery’s location and hiding the “12 streams of Moses.”
According to tradition, the streams quenched the thirst of the Jewish people during their Exodus towards the Promised Land. Attiya also accused the monks of allowing the occupation of Greece and the European Union in the area.
Members of the Salafi movement, an Islamic extremist sect, took the accusations a step forward, saying that the Monastery was working alongside the Israeli Intelligence Service.
Former MP Ehab Ramzy, a lawyer, along with representatives of the Gebalaya tribe involved in the security of the monastery, rejected the accusations during a press conference in Cairo.
Fr. Gregorios al-Sinawi, a monk from the aforementioned monastery who was present, rejected the accusations, saying they were unfounded.
“What is going on, is nothing but tilting at windmills,” he said.
Other speakers at the conference said that the accusations are meant to stir up hostility against the monks through lies. (J.A.E.)