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Coptic Christians condemn anti-Muslim film, distance themselves from alleged filmmaker

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A screenshot from a trailer for controversial anti-Islam film, "Innocence of Muslims."

Coptic Christians in Southern California are distancing themselves from the alleged director of an anti-Muslim film that some observers say has sparked deadly violence in Egypt, Libya and elsewhere in the Middle East. The victims include U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans in the Libyan city of Benghazi.

This morning, the Associated Press reported that U.S. authorities had named 55-year-old Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, a Coptic Christian based in Southern California, as the director of a film titled "Innocence of Muslims," which mocks Muslims and the prophet Muhammad. In the report, Nakoula has denied directing the film. He says he only assisted with film logistics. Nakoula identified the filmmaker as Sam Bacile, although cell phone records trace back to Nakoula.