Bells are musical instruments, however, as are our liturgical fans, and we do use them liturgically, amd the Ethiopians, Copts and Armenians use a broad range of musical instrumentation.
The bells and liturgical fans, as used in the Syriac tradition, are hardly what people would think of when hearing the term "musical instruments", even if they are by some technicality.
I have to confess I find this baffling, and also a difficult stance to take given that the liturgical fans are used, like most percussion instruments, at certain climactic points in the liturgy (of course, this derives from the ancient use of peacock or ostrich feathers and the need to keep flies out of the holy oblatiom).
But, that being said, what do you
think of when you hear the term "musical instruments?"