Egyptian Court Denies Adoptive Family Custody of ‘Baby Shenouda’, Citing Lack of Jurisdiction

Egyptian Court Denies Adoptive Family Custody of ‘Baby Shenouda’, Citing Lack of Jurisdiction

Photo credit: Coptic Solidarity

An Egyptian administrative court has refused to rule on whether the child Shenouda’s adoptive family can gain custody of him, resulting in him remaining within the state’s custody. The court cited its lack of jurisdiction in making the decision.

Over the past year, ‘Baby Shenouda’s’ case stirred much controversy in Egypt. A Coptic Christian couple found Shenouda inside a Cairo church when he was only a few days old and took him in, raising him as their own. Egyptian authorities took custody of Shenouda when DNA tests, which were performed as a result of a family dispute over inheritance, revealed that he was not biologically related to the couple.

Shenouda was then placed into an orphanage, renamed Youssef and assigned to the Islamic faith.

Children with no known lineage within the country, as per the Civil Status Department at the Ministry of Interior, are assigned the Islamic faith by default.

Moreover, under Shari’a law, adoption is not permissible. Fostering a child, however, is. In 2021, a decree was set in place by Egypt’s Ministry of Social Solidarity wherein foster parents are granted the right to add their names to a fostered child’s birth certificate.

Netizens have raised their concerns online, some siding with the Shenouda family, while others sided with the state arguing that a child should not have been taken in without going through the proper official routes as is the case in most countries.

Shenouda’s adoptive family intends to make another appeal to the court.

Interview with UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini: Resolving the Israel-Palestine conflict continues to be a priority for Egypt
Egyptian Compounds: a Culture of Communal Living or Class Solidarity?

Subscribe to our newsletter


More in News

Egypt’s Al Ahly Basketball Team Clinch African Championship

Shereif Barakat28 May 2023

Egypt’s Wrestling Federation Under Investigation Following Young Wrestler’s Escape to France

Shereif Barakat27 May 2023

Egypt Delaying Wheat Payments, but Supply Ongoing as Sellers “Trust” Authority

Omar Auf27 May 2023

Entertainment Activities in Egypt Facing New Tax Measures

Egyptian Streets25 May 2023

Egyptian Fashion Designer Sara Onsi Honored at Forbes Middle East Women’s Summit

Farah Sadek25 May 2023

Egypt Divided Over Silver-Medal Winning Wrestler Who Fled to France

Shereif Barakat24 May 2023

UN Allocates USD 5 Million to Sudanese Refugees Fleeing to Egypt

Marina Makary23 May 2023

Egypt and Oman Sign Deals to Foster Bilateral Cooperation, Strengthen Economic Ties

Farah Rafik23 May 2023