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Prince Charles gives money to children of 21 Coptic martyrs

Relatives of the murdered men. Prince Charles has given an unspecified amount to help their children (AP)

Prince Charles has donated money to the families of the Coptic martyrs of Libya.

The Prince of Wales was responding to the “When Left Behind” appeal launched by British Coptic Bishop Angaelos to help the children of the 21 men, 20 of them Egyptian Christians, the other believed to be a Ghanaian.

The prince also wrote personal letters of condolence to Coptic Pope Tawadros II and Bishop Angaelos, who is General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in Britain, following the murder of the men.

The amount the prince donated to the men’s families has not been specified. Last year he contributed to Aid to the Church in Need’s campaign to help Iraqi and Syrian Christians. In December 2013 the Prince of Wales visited the Coptic Orthodox Church Centre in Stevenage.

The Most Revd Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, also offered his condolences to Bishop Angaelos during a visit to the Coptic Orthodox Church Centre last month, and endorsed the appeal with a video message. The full video appeal can be seen here.

Bishop Angaelos launched the “When Left Behind” appeal at a memorial service in London last month, where he spoke of the immense courage, strength and dignity shown by those who lost their lives in Libya, saying: “As we mourn with the families of those who died we also rejoice in the faithful conviction, strength, dignity and bravery of these men; these fathers, brothers, uncles and sons who will never be forgotten.”

Bishop Angaelos invited all to contribute to the appeal, saying: “These young men were bread-winners for their families and their loss will not only rob them of the joy of their presence but will leave a significant financial void in an already impoverished community. I am thankful to His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, His Grace The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Right Honourable David Cameron and so many more who have already expressed their support and solidarity with the families who are left behind and with the Coptic faithful around the world.”

People can donate via the website or text “COPT21 £(amount)” to 70070.