The Christian population in Iraq is in danger of being extinct in about five years, a recent report from an international Catholic charity organization says.
At present, there are only around 300,000 Christians left in Iraq from over a million in 2002. The Aid to the Church in Need released a new report saying Iraq's Christian population faces extinction in five years, especially after 120,000 of them are being forced to convert to Islam or die, according to Rome Reports.
If the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is not stopped, the Christian population in Iraq could be eradicated by the year 2020. Those in Syria also face serious threat to their lives, Sputnik News reports. more >>
Aceh Singkil's authorities will close down several Christian churches this week in the wake of the burning of some churches by hardline Indonesian Muslims.
The church torching in the province of Aceh Singkil, Indonesia left one dead and several others hurt. Tension between religious groups in the conservative province has been simmering recently and is in danger of turning into another violent act, according to Reuters.
Most of the Muslims in Indonesia practice a moderate form of their religion, but Aceh strictly follows the Islamic Sharia law. The recent torching of Christian churches allegedly stemmed from the issue of the establishments not having official building permits, the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) reports. more >>
Policing authorities in the town of Sargodha in the Punjab province of Pakistan have arrested and charged a Christian man known healing the sick with allegedly committing the crime of blasphemy.
According to the British Pakistani Christian Association, Naveed John, a Christian resident from the Maryam Colony in Sargodha, was arrested on Oct. 8 and has been languishing in prison since his arrest.
The humanitarian agency's report states that John was arrested after police officers found a sword in his room that featured verses from the Quran inscribed into the blade. Family members told BPCA that police officials have demanded that they pay a bribe if they want John to be released. more >>
Police in Sweden are said to be investigating possible Islamic State threats made against Assyrian Christians after IS-inspired symbols and disturbing graffiti messages were found painted on at least two businesses in southwest Gothenburg.
Vandals reportedly targeted Assyrian Christian-owned businesses, including a local bakery and a pizzeria, which had their walls covered in "Convert or Die" and "The Caliphate is Here" on Tuesday. The IS logo was also spray-painted as well as the Arabic letter 'N' for "Nazarene," which IS fighters used to identify Christian families in northern Iraq last year before the Mosul takeover.
Le Pain Francois bakery owner Markus Samuelsson was in shock early Tuesday upon finding his business completely vandalized. He called the attacks "terribly painful" and said they point to signs of modern day persecution. more >>
An elderly Christian woman who was stabbed multiple times during a terrorist attack on a bus in Jerusalem, Israel, that left two people dead and at least 16 others injured on Tuesday says she is convinced she is alive today because she called on Jesus as her attacker plunged his blade into her body.
According to a One for Israel report two terrorists boarded the No. 78 bus in the Armon haNatziv (East Talpiyot) neighborhood of Jerusalem, one armed with a knife, the other with a gun. They then began shooting and stabbing the passengers, including the elderly woman identified as Marike Veldman in a report by Alfred Muller in Reformatorisch Dagblad.
Veldman, who is originally from the Netherlands but has lived in Israel for many years, said when the terrorists boarded the bus one of them sat in front of her until things quickly turned ugly. more >>
Grand Ayatollah Ahmad al-Baghdadi, the leading Shiite cleric of Iraq, has claimed in an interview that "real Islam" consists of forcefully converting people into the faith, abducting Christian women, and destroying churches. The cleric's comments stand in contrast to other Islamic leaders, who have condemned terroristic actions.
Al-Baghdadi reportedly made the comments during a televised interview, Frontpage Mag said, in which the cleric claimed that Muslims are obligated to go on the offensive and conquer people of other faiths, when circumstances permit.
"If they are people of the book [Jews and Christians] we demand of them the jizya — and if they refuse, then we fight them. That is if he is Christian. He has three choices: either convert to Islam, or, if he refuses and wishes to remain Christian, then pay the jizya," the cleric reportedly said in the interview. more >>