A letter-writing campaign launched by the American Center for Law and Justice is calling on U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the U.N. General Assembly meeting in New York later in September, and ask him for the release of imprisoned American citizen Pastor Saeed Abedini.
"I respectfully urge you to do everything in your power to meet with President Rouhani while he is in New York and negotiate the release of Saeed Abedini, a pastor who has been imprisoned in Iran for three years solely for the peaceful exercise of his faith," reads the letter directed at Ban that the ACLJ is urging people to sign.
"Pastor Saeed suffers from injuries sustained in the prison, requiring surgeries that have not been provided. He should be released on humanitarian grounds and allowed to return to his wife and children." more >>
The migrant crisis in Europe has reached "biblical proportions," according to U.K. Independence Party leader Nigel Farage, noting that millions of refugees from Syria and other countries throughout the Middle East and Africa hoping to be relocated to the West are overwhelming the borders and stretching capacities.
"The problem we've got is we've opened the door to an exodus of biblical proportions, meaning millions and millions of refugees. We've lost sight of what it is to be a refugee. How many millions does Europe want to take? That is the question," Farage said, speaking with BBC Radio 4 on Tuesday.
While many refugees from Syria are fleeing the four-year-long civil war, as well as attacks by the Islamic State terror group, Farage said the U.K. has "lost sight" of the definition of a refugee. more >>
Christians in India marked the seventh anniversary of the Orissa attacks on Monday, praying for close to 100 Christians who were massacred by Hindu extremists who were pressuring them to convert. An Archbishop has said the faith of Orissa's Christians has grown stronger in the face of persecution.
The Archbishop of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar, His Exc. Mgr. John Barwa SVD, told Fides News Agency that Christians "gather in prayer for the victims, reiterating, all together, our common commitment to promoting peace, justice and hope. The faith of Christians in Orissa has become stronger in the face of persecution."
The major attacks on August 31, 2008, in Orissa also left close to 56,000 Christians homeless after 300 churches and 6,000 homes were raided and looted. The Hindu mob reportedly organized against Christians who they accused of converting Indians to Christianity. more >>
An Iraqi Archbishop says he argues with God "every day" and is failing to understand "what He is doing" in the face of the extreme suffering of persecuted Christians in the region.
"I don't understand what he is doing when I look at what has happened in the region," Chaldean Catholic Archbishop Bashar Warda of Erbil told The Criterion, newspaper of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis. "I quarrel with him every day."
Warda said that over 100,000 Christians and other minorities have sought refuge in Erbil over the past year, fleeing the Islamic State terror group. more >>
With the rise of Christian persecution at the hands of the Chinese Communist Party over the past year, Chinese Christians are starting to speak out after many have been arrested for defending church crosses from forceful government removal.
"At least nine people I know have been taken away by the police and that figure is still rising," an unnamed church leader in the eastern province of Zhejiang told The Guardian on Thursday.
"We think it is a campaign targeting church leaders across the province. It can only be a co-ordinated action initiated by the provincial government." more >>
A court in Pakistan has directed jail authorities and government officials not to restrict the father and other close relatives of Asia Bibi, a Christian woman sentenced to death for blasphemy, from meeting her in jail, her lawyer said.
The Lahore High Court in Pakistan's Punjab province gave the order after the blasphemy victim's father, Soran Masih, filed a petition seeking access to his daughter and complaining that police and prison authorities blocked his entry several times since 2012, according to ucanews.com.
"Judge Muhammad Anwar ul Haq issued directives to the jail superintendent of Multan and the Home Department to let Soran Masih and his family members see Asia Bibi," Sardar Mushtaq Gill, Masih's family lawyer, was quoted as saying. more >>