Christian Prisoner Maryam Zargaran, who has now spent over three weeks on a hunger strike in Iranian prison, has been denied a release on medical grounds by the Iranian court, despite reports of her worsening medical condition.
Mohabat News reported Monday that the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence has refused to grant Zargaran's release despite signs that she is developing multiple sclerosis. The Christian woman began her second hunger strike on July 5 in protest against the treatment she has received in prison, and reports are saying that she has become very weak, with her long-term heart condition posing an increasing health risk.
Zargaran's family were allowed to visit her in prison recently, but revealed that she refuses to receive treatment at the prison clinic because staff mistreat her there. more >>
Human rights groups have been speaking out against what they say is an alarming escalation of violence in several attacks against Egypt's Coptic Orthodox Christian community, with police providing little if any protection for victims.
Mina Thabet, programme director for minorities and vulnerable groups with the Egyptian Commission of Rights and Freedoms, told AFP that attacks on Coptic Christians have been "escalating in a very short time."
There have been a number of reports in separate Egyptian villages in recent weeks of large Muslim mobs torching Christian houses, preventing them from establishing churches and gathering to worship. Christians have been beaten and threatened against practicing their faith, while police and government officials have been failing to punish those responsible, Thabet said. more >>
Questions remain about the fate of abducted Indian priest Tom Uzhunnalil, who was abducted in March by armed militants in Yemen, even after a video was reportedly released on social media purporting to show a frail, weakened and bearded Uzhunnalil being beaten.
Footage and a photograph were posted on Uzhunnalil's Facebook page on Tuesday by a person claiming to be a "Yemeni friend" of the abducted priest who was kidnapped during a raid on a Missionaries of Charity retirement home in Aden in which militants took the lives of 16 civilians and four nuns.
The photo shows a frail and weak man with a large gray beard clutching his chest. The caption included with the photo stated that "an entreaty seeking his release would be uploaded soon." more >>
Even though persecution against Christians in Bangladesh is on the rise, so is the number of Muslims converting to Christianity in the south Asian nation.
Just as in other countries where the population is dominated by a Muslim majority government, Christians in Bangladesh are at risk of being killed or persecuted because of their faith in Jesus Christ.
But while nearly 90 percent of Bangladesh's population of 165 million people is Muslim, Christianity is gaining traction. more >>
The father of a 14-year-old Pakistani Christian girl was shot and killed after he tried to rescue his daughter who was kidnapped and forced into an Islamic marriage to a man she works for as a domestic servant.
The British Pakistani Christian Association, which reports on issues of Christian persecution in Pakistan, said that the girl, Mehwish, had been working as a domestic servant at the house of an Islamic man, Zahid Iqbal, at Shadab Colony in Faisalabad, when she was kidnapped in May.
After Mehwish did not return home for several days, her parents received a letter that included a copy of her marriage certificate with Iqbal. more >>
Why has the West been so supportive of Palestinian nationalism, yet so reluctant to support the Kurds, the largest nation in the world without a state?
The Kurds have been instrumental in fighting the Islamic State (ISIS); have generously accepted millions of refugees fleeing ISIS to the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG); and embrace Western values such as gender equality, religious freedom, and human rights. They are also an ancient people with an ethnic and linguistic identity stretching back millennia and have faced decades of brutal oppression as a minority. Yet they cannot seem to get sufficient support from the West for their political aspirations.
The Palestinians, by contrast, claimed a distinct national identity relatively recently, are less than one-third fewer in number (in 2013, the global Palestinian population was estimated by the Palestinian Authority to reach 11.6 million), control land that is less than 1/15th the size of the KRG territory, and have not developed their civil society or economy with nearly as much success as the Kurds. Yet the United Nations, the European Union, the Arab League, and other international bodies have all but ignored Kurdish statehood dreams while regularly prioritizing Palestinian ambitions over countless other global crises. more >>