In 1995, the Dutch Christian organization Open Doors asked me to look into the stories of Christian girls in Egypt being kidnapped by Muslims and being forced to convert to Islam. I contacted human rights lawyer Maurice Ṣādiq, who has repeatedly defended such claims. I also contacted clergy and church workers in Cairo, Alexandria, and Upper Egypt. I have been working for around one year on this report; studying the documents of Maurice Ṣādiq, translating them, conducting interviews, and locating case studies of other conversions. In most cases, conversions from Christianity to Islam occur in the midst of heartbreaking social circumstances, but no evidence of forced conversions to Islam could be found. I presented this report in April 1997 to Open Doors, who decided to use this for internal use only, thus not making it available for wider publication.
In 1999 Coptic organizations published a full page advertisement in the US in which ten girls were mentioned by name as having been forced to convert to Islam. In response, the New York Council of Churches asked me for a report. It turned out that I not only knew the stories of 7 out of 10 girls from my earlier research but also had continued to follow up with some of the stories.
Christian Solidarity International published in 2012 the report “Tell My Mother I Miss Her” in which they explicitly criticized my report to the New York Council of Churches. In response, we are making this report available, since this was the basis for the report to the New York Council of Churches. Attached as appendices to this report are the full text of the correspondences with CSI in May 2012 which, after their report became public, demonstrates they had no intentions for dialogue and exchange of information, but were instead pursuing a clear political agenda.
The PDF file that was uploaded on December 8, 2012, was a draft text that had been presented to several people, including Father Dr. Christiaan van Nispen, for feedback. The electronic copy had been lost and we thus uploaded the scanned document we had received from Father van Nispen with his notes. In June 2016 Filippus Hulsman converted the PDF text in a word document that was edited by Matthew Sparks. Cornelis Hulsman added in June 2016 a historical background to this report of 1997.