Palestinian Arab in Egypt

Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

Islam came to Egypt soon after the death of Mohammed. The Egyptian population at that time was mainly Jewish, Eastern Orthodox Christians and animists. Over the centuries more and more people converted to Islam and more and more Muslims moved into the area. In the first Arab-Israeli War of 1947-1948, thousands of Palestinian Arabs fled their homes in the area now known are Israel. Atrocities were committed by both sides in the war. Since that time, Arabs who departed Israel have not been allowed to return to their homeland. During the 1967 Arab-Israeli War, thousands more left east Jerusalem, Gaza and the West Bank. Some of the Palestinians who departed Palestine in 1948 and 1967 came to live in Egypt. The Egyptian government has not granted the Palestinians citizenship or welcomed more Palestinians into their country. Egypt already has millions of impoverished people, and the government does not want more. Egypt does not want Palestinians to take jobs that could be filled by Egyptians or take resources the government could use for their own people.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Not being citizens of Egypt, uneducated Palestinians often must operate in the "shadow" economy. That means they must take jobs that Egyptians consider too dangerous or beneath them. Uneducated Palestinians must take any job they can find. These low positions include digging ditches, cleaning streets and sewers and taking care of animals. These lower-level workers are not allowed to bring their families to Egypt and may be in the country illegally. They send most of their earnings home and often live in squalid conditions with a dozen or more living in one apartment. Some Palestinians are involved in smuggling goods out of Egypt into the Gaza Strip. University educated Palestinians who speak English or French can find jobs but at a lower pay that Egyptian citizens. For a large amount of money to the right officials, these Palestinians might be able to bring their families to live with them in Egypt. Egyptian administrators resist giving spots in universities to those who are not citizens.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The large majority of Palestinians in Egypt are Muslims, mostly Sunni. A small group are Orthodox Christians. Many of these Christians have departed the Middle East, preferring to live in areas where Christians are not persecuted. Sunnis believe that by following the Five Pillars of Islam that they will attain heaven when they die. However, Allah, the supreme God of the universe, determines who enters paradise. Sunnis pray five times a day facing Mecca. They fast the month of Ramadan. They attend mosque services on Friday. If a Muslim has the means, he or she will make a pilgrimage to Mecca once in his or her lifetime. Muslims are also prohibited from drinking alcohol, eating pork, gambling, stealing, using deceit, slandering, and making idols.
The two main holidays for Sunni Muslims are Eid al Fitr, the breaking of the monthly fast and Eid al Adha, the celebration of Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son to Allah.

What Are Their Needs?

The Palestinians living in Egypt may not ever have heard a clear presentation of the gospel. Isa or Jesus is much more than the human prophet that He is deemed to be in Islam. The Palestinians working in lower-level jobs in Egypt would benefit by medical teams of Christ followers coming to help them and showing them the love of Christ. Christian teachers can set up schools for Palestinian children. Sometimes Palestinian children are not allowed to attend Egyptian public schools.

Prayer Points

Ask the Lord to raise up a Disciple Making Movement among the Palestinians in Egypt in this decade. Pray the Spirit produces a hunger for spiritual things among Palestinians in Egypt.  Pray that Palestinians would tune into Christian TV and radio programs.
Pray that Palestinian parents would be able to provide adequately for their children.

Scripture Prayers for the Arab, Palestinian in Egypt.

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Arab, Palestinian
People Name in Country Arab, Palestinian
Natural Name Palestinian Arab
Pronunciation pail-uh-STIN-ee-un AE-rub
Alternate Names Arabic, Palestinian-Jordanian; Gazan Arab; Israeli Arab Muslim; Lebanese Arab; Levantine Arabs; Palestinian Arab; Syro-Lebanese Arab
Population this Country 85,000
Population all Countries 11,593,000
Total Countries 26
Indigenous No
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group No
Pioneer Workers Needed 2
People ID 14276
ROP3 Code 107785
ROP25 Code 300415
ROP25 Name Arab, Palestinian
Country Egypt
Region Africa, North and Middle East
Continent Africa
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 38  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Country Egypt
Region Africa, North and Middle East
Continent Africa
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 38  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.10 %)
1.60 %
Ethnic Religions
8.00 %
0.00 %
88.40 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
2.00 %
0.00 %
Primary Language Arabic, Levantine (85,000 speakers)
Language Code apc   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Arabic, Levantine (85,000 speakers)
Language Code apc   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Arabic, Levantine
Photo Source Levi Meir Clancy - Wikimedia  Creative Commons 
Map Source Bethany World Prayer Center  
Profile Source Joshua Project 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.

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