More Canadian churches are burning in suspicious fires


TORONTO — A Coptic Orthodox church burned down Monday in the Canadian province of British Columbia, the latest in a series of church fires in that country deemed “suspect” by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Police in Canada are investigating more than 15 fires that have damaged or destroyed churches in recent weeks, but in most cases they have yet to name a suspect or provide an official reason for the wave of fires. suspected criminals who targeted Christian churches across the country.

No one took credit for the fires, but politicians and law enforcement officials speculated that churches were being targeted by those angry at the recent discovery of anonymous graves in schools for indigenous children run by the Roman Catholic Church. In most cases, police said they had no evidence the fires were related to the graves.

National politicians, indigenous leaders and law enforcement officials condemned the fires. The first fires were in June on native lands in British Columbia.

The fires destroyed four Roman Catholic churches and came after an Indigenous community said it found 215 anonymous graves near a former residential school for Indigenous children in British Columbia. A few weeks later, the Cowessess First Nation in the province of Saskatchewan in western Canada found 751 anonymous graves near the former Marieval Indian Residential School.

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