As the violence continues in the Middle East, many Houstonians that are originally from Egypt are keeping tabs on their loved ones back home. And they are speaking out.

There were a handful of protests around the area over the weekend, including one Sunday at the St. Mary & Archangel Michael Coptic Orthodox Church. Many are disappointed in how the United States and the Obama Administration has reacted to the fact that over 600 people have been killed.

Moahamed El-Dahshan is an economist from Cairo who was here in Houston to give a speech for the World Affairs Council. He told KTRH many Houstonians of Egyptian descent are upset that the U.S. is standing on the sidelines while people are being killed.

“Many realize that U.S. policy is guided by its narrow interest in the region and not for the higher morals that the country stands for. For many people that is very disappointing,” El-Dahshan said.

El-Dahshan says many people think the violence is simply unacceptable.

“Houstonians have managed to zoom in on the important thing. There has been loss of life that needs to be stopped immediately,” he said.

Houstonian Sherine Farid was back home in Egypt over a month ago. She tells KTRH she can't believe how things have broken down there.

“What I saw in the streets six weeks ago was what democracy really is (the anti-Morsi protests). It’s not a voting box. The people (anti-Morsi) are dedicated and will not give up their rights,” she explained. “The original demonstrations were very peaceful.”

Photo credit: Associated Press/Manu Brabo