Four atheist bloggers in Bangladesh are facing up to 14 years in prison for defaming Islam and the Prophet Mohammed, including one who was stabbed viciously by fundamentalist attackers earlier this year.
"They have been indicted with defaming Islam, Prophet Mohammed and other religions through their Internet writings. They spread malice against all religions," senior public prosecutor Shah Alam Talukdar told AFP.
The four accused are 24-year old Subrata Adhikari Shuvo, 36-year old Russel Parvez, 42-year old Mashiur Rahman Biplob, and 29-year old Asif Mohiuddin. The bloggers were arrested earlier this year after nationwide protests by Muslims targeting atheists who were critical of Islam in online posts. more >>
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry gave Syria one week to hand over its chemical weapons after the Middle Eastern country said in a statement on Monday that it "welcomed" Russia's proposal to give up its chemical weapons by putting them into international control, one day before U.S. President Barack Obama addresses the American people on plans for a military strike in the Middle Eastern country.
Kerry said during a press conference with British Foreign Secretary William Hague on Monday that he would allow Syria one week to give up its chemical weapons, although he has no expectation of the Middle Eastern country doing so, arguing it is "impossible" for Syrian President Bashar Assad to turn over the chemical weapons that he denies he used.
After meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Monday, Syrian counterpart Walid al-Moallem said in a statement to reporters that the Middle Eastern country "welcomes" Russia's suggestion that the country turn over its chemical weapons to international control in order to avoid a U.S. military strike. more >>
A 19-year Air Force veteran who was relieved of his duties because he disagreed with his openly gay commander over gay marriage is now facing a formal investigation after he told me his story.
Senior Master Sgt. Phillip Monk found himself at odds with his Lackland Air Force Base commander after he objected to her plans to severely punish an instructor who had expressed religious objections to homosexuality. During the conversation, his commander ordered him to share his personal views on homosexuality.
"I was relieved of my position because I don't agree with my commander's position on gay marriage," he told me. "We've been told that if you publicly say that homosexuality is wrong, you are in violation of Air Force policy." more >>
Islamists have taken over a southern Egyptian city, vandalizing its Christian institutions and terrorizing its Coptic population.
Since Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi was overthrown on July 3, Islamists have ruled Dalga, a city of 120,000 people, 20,000 of whom are Christians. Immediately after Morsi was forced to step down, attackers plundered Christian institutions, stealing ancient churches icons and electrical equipment and burning the buildings after they had finished.
The head of a global evangelical organization that represents over 600 million Christians worldwide is calling for global action to help stem the refugee crisis in the Kingdom of Jordan.
Geoff Tunnicliffe, chief executive officer and secretary general for the World Evangelical Alliance, told The Christian Post about the refugee situation on the Jordan-Syrian border. "There's a crisis here with the refugees. Imagine 30 million people arriving in the United States in the last six months as refugees. That's the kind of percentage of people that we're talking about that are now in Jordan," said Tunnicliffe.
"So you can imagine the strain that's on the government and the NGOs and so one of the things that we want to do is draw attention to this crisis and call upon our community to respond in a very significant way to help the refugees." more >>
Christian leaders in the Middle East believe that a U.S. military intervention in Syria will have a "detrimental effect" on Christians in the region, Geoff Tunnicliffe of the World Evangelical Alliance said in a statement to the White House on Thursday.
Tunnicliffe, who serves as the secretary general for the global evangelical group, is currently attending a conference in Amman, Jordan, to address the plight of "Arab Christians," particularly those in Egypt and Syria. The conference was convened by Jordan's King Abdullah II and attended by California's Saddleback Church pastor Rick Warren, Christian Hollywood producers Roma Downey and Mark Burnett, and several Middle Eastern Christian leaders.
After speaking at the conference, Tunnicliffe sent a letter to the White House and the United Nation's Security Council saying that the majority of Christian leaders he spoke to from the Syria region discourage military action in their country, saying such intervention would have a "detrimental effect" on Christians in the region. more >>