News from the Frontlines

Thursday July 30, 2015

Police Complicit in Attack on Christians in West Delhi, India, Sources Say

Officers intervene only after Christians 'beaten enough,' pastor says.By Our New Delhi Correspondent
NEW DELHI, July 29, 2015 (Morning Star News) – After watching idly as a mob of Hindu extremists dragged Christians from a prayer meeting in West Delhi and beat them, police questioned those who were attacked as if they were guilty of fraudulent conversion, sources said.
A mob said to be members of the Hindu extremist Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) stormed the prayer meeting in Nangloi, Nihal Vihar on July 18 and beat them, leaving one Christian with a damaged eardrum, they said. Police watched without intervening, and initially officers refused to register a case against the assailants, Christian leaders said.

Three pastors had gathered at the home of Ayaid Prasad to pray for his sick daughter when about 15 Hindu extremists accused them of forceful conversion as they barged in with clubs at about 4 p.m. They shouted at the Christians to stop the meeting and beat pastor Harchand Singh and two guest pastors from Kerala, Pastor Singh said. [READ MORE]

News from the Frontlines

Monday July 27, 2015

Attorneys for South Sudanese Pastors Facing Execution Make Final Appeal for Justice

Charges stem from 'political motives,' source says.By Our Sudan Correspondent
JUBA, South Sudan, July 24, 2015 (Morning Star News) – Attorneys for two South Sudanese pastors facing the death penalty made their closing arguments on Thursday(July 23) before a judge who appears to favor the prosecution, sources said.
Defense lawyers concluded their case at Khartoum Bahri Court with the assertion that agents from the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) illegally arrested the Rev. Yat Michael on Dec. 14, 2014 and the Rev. Peter Yein Reith on Jan. 11.

“Justice requires that you don’t judge [arrest] simply because you doubt [suspect] them without any concrete evidence,” one lawyer said. [READ MORE]

News from the Frontlines

Monday July 27, 2015

Christian Family Awaits Word on Copt Kidnapped in Libya by Islamic State Affiliate

Militants also seize Christians from Nigeria, Ghana. By Our Middle East Correspondent
ISTANBUL, Turkey, July 23, 2015 (Morning Star News) – As unconfirmed reports and rumors about the status of three Christians kidnapped in Libya by the Islamic State (IS) continue to spread in Egyptian media, a Coptic family waits in fear over the fate of their loved one.
On Friday (July 17), an IS affiliate in Libya known as Islamic State, Barqa Province, announced that it had kidnapped three men, all of them Christians. As evidence of their claims, they released photographs of the three men and photographs of their passport cover pages.

Bakhit Nageh Efrank Ebeid, 21, was traveling on July 10 in a 14-seat van from Alexandria, Egypt to Tripoli with a group of men, most of them Muslims from his hometown of Kom Badar, when IS militants stopped them in Sirte, Libya, according to Ezz Tawfik, a Coptic activist and journalist in Upper Egypt. Two other Christians, Adeola Ibrahim from Nigeria and Sekyere Kofi Frimpong from Ghana, were also in the van.

“ISIS soldiers were there to search their car and check their passports,” said Tawfik, who is in close contact with the victim’s family. “They took all their passports, and saw his, and asked if he was a Christian, and he said ‘Yes.’ So they asked him to stand aside and released the Muslims who were in the same van.” [READ MORE]

News from the Frontlines

Thursday July 23, 2015

Supreme Court of Pakistan Agrees to Hear Appeal of Christian Mother on Death Row

Execution of Asia Bibi suspended until final ruling.By Our Pakistan Correspondent
LAHORE, Pakistan, July 22, 2015 (Morning Star News) – Pakistan’s Supreme Court today agreed to review the case of a Christian mother sentenced to death on a blasphemy charge, temporarily suspending her execution.
Aasiya Noreen, commonly known as Asia Bibi, is the first woman to be sentenced to death for blasphemy in Pakistan. The three-judge bench of the Supreme Court at the Lahore Registry admitted for hearing her petition challenging the sentence.

Attorney Saif-ul-Malook told Morning Star News that he had a strong case for demanding Noreen’s acquittal. [READ MORE]

News from the Frontlines

Wednesday July 22, 2015

Two Young Christian Women in Sudan Fined for 'Indecent' Dress

Remaining eight await verdict.By Our Sudan Correspondent
JUBA, South Sudan, July 21, 2015 (Morning Star News) – Two of 10 young Christian women charged with wearing indecent clothing in North Khartoum, Sudan were fined 500 Sudanese pounds (US$85) on Wednesday (July 15), a Christian leader said.
Ferdoos Eltoum, 19, and 18-year-old Rehab Omer Kalkom were arrested on June 25 along with 10 other women; two of the 12 were released without charges the next day. The remaining eight young women, released on bail after spending a night in custody, remain charged.

The 12 women arrested, some of whom may have been minors, were forced to remove their clothing for Sudan’s notorious Public Order Police to “inspect” the clothes, according to Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW). The women were all wearing standard blouses with either skirts or pants, the source told Morning Star News.

“They have targeted these girls because of their faith and their race,” the Christian leader said. [READ MORE]

News from the Frontlines

Thursday July 16, 2015

Three Christians in Egypt Arrested for Allegedly Showing Contempt for Islam

Angry Muslim forcibly detains evangelist in Alexandria.By Our Middle East Correspondent
ISTANBUL, Turkey, July 16, 2015 (Morning Star News) – Three Christians in Egypt have been accused of showing disdain or contempt for Islam after an evangelism outreach to Muslims over the weekend in the port city of Alexandria, sources said.
The three Christians were arrested on Saturday (July 11) after at least one was stopped for handing out small bags of dried dates and copies of the Sermon on the Mount, according to human rights activists. In addition to the dates, a snack Muslims commonly eat when breaking the Ramadan day-time fast, the bags contained a statement about God’s love and His omniscient nature.

“The Lord knows all that occurs, for He is the mighty knower,” the message read. “He can carry on His shoulders all that is oppressive and exhausting and bring comfort and joy, for He loves you very much.”

The bags also carried the name of an Arabic-language website about Jesus and the Christian faith. [READ MORE]

Nigeria

Thursday July 16, 2015

Two Explosive Devices Planted at Church in Jos, Nigeria

Bomb found in restroom tossed over fence before it explodes.By Our Nigeria Correspondent
JOS, Nigeria, July 15, 2015 (Morning Star News) – A congregation in this central Nigerian city continued worshiping on Sunday (July 12) after a security man found and tossed over a fence a bomb before it exploded, the pastor said.
Authorities later discovered a second bomb on the church premises and disposed of it, said the Rev. Ezekiel Omidiji, senior pastor of Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) Gospel 1 in the Tudun Wada area of Jos, Plateau state.

“It was around quarter to nine when we heard this bomb blast,” Pastor Omidiji told Morning Star News. “Members were scared, but we were able to control them not to rush out into danger again.”

In some attacks on churches in Nigeria, assailants have sprayed Christians with bullets as they rushed out of worship buildings that had been bombed. [READ MORE]

News from the Frontlines

Saturday July 11, 2015

Hindu Extremists Instigate Tribal People against Christians in Jharkhand, India

Five families and pastor threatened, banished.By Our India Correspondent
NEW DELHI, July 11, 2015 (Morning Star News) – Christian families driven from their village in India’s Jharkhand state have returned home with police help, but tribal people instigated by Hindu extremists are still bent on expelling them, sources said.


Hindu extremists last month mobilized tribal groups to banish the Christian families from Kullu village in Chanho Block, Ranchi District, about 30 miles from the state capital, Ranchi, an area pastor said.

“The Christians in the village have been discriminated and threatened for a long time, but the banishment started in the first week of June, when five Christian families were threatened and banished from the village,” said pastor Moosa Minj, who also was forced to flee. “The tribal families that have been banished have been Christians for more than 20 years.” [READ MORE]

News from the Frontlines

Friday July 10, 2015

Islamic Extremists in Uganda Try to Kill Former Sheikh who Survived Poisoning

Evangelist lost 12-year-old daughter to killers last year.By Our East Africa Correspondent

NAIROBI, Kenya, July 9, 2015 (Morning Star News) – Twice in the past two weeks, Muslim extremists in eastern Uganda have tried to kill a former sheikh known throughout the region for his Christian activities, the former Islamic teacher told Morning Star News.

Hassan Muwanguzi, an evangelist in Budaka District whose conversion and ministry success led hard-line Muslims to poison him and kill his 12-year-old daughter last year, said he received a phone call in late June from a Pallisa District resident, 40-year-old Naaya Edward. The caller said he had been given a message to deliver to Muwanguzi. [READ MORE]

Nigeria

Tuesday July 7, 2015

Boko Haram Unleashes Bloodshed in Attacks in Nigeria's Central, Northeastern States

At least five Christians killed in Yobe, Borno states; two church buildings attacked in Jos.By Our Nigeria Correspondent
JOS, Nigeria, July 7, 2015 (Morning Star News) – At least five Christians were killed in northeastern Nigeria over a weekend of violence capped by a twin bombing in Jos that led to attacks on two church buildings on Sunday night (July 5).
In Potiskum, Yobe state in the northeast, Islamic extremist group Boko Haram was suspected in the suicide bombing on Sunday that killed a clergyman and four worshippers at the Redeemed Christian Church of God, police reportedly said. The dead reportedly included a woman and her two children.

Muslim extremists also reportedly killed nine people in several villages in Borno state over the weekend. The Associated Press reported that 32 church buildings were burned down along with about 300 homes in the attacks. [READ MORE]

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