Barnabas Fund, an international Christian aid agency, has transported and helped over 8,000 Christians escape persecution at the hands of the Islamic government in Sudan, and is calling for help to save the many more who find themselves stranded.
"In the North the government is becoming increasingly anti-Christian," Dr. Patrick Sookhdeo, the international director of Barnabas Fund, said in a phone interview with The Christian Post on Tuesday.
"The North is heavily Sharia-based and strongly anti-Christian. So we've got situations where women are arrested for breaching Sharia law on dress, and can then be whipped and imprisoned. That is a major problem," he added, noting that a number of Christian churches have been attacked as well. more >>
A mob of close to 1,000 people in a village in North India attacked the construction site of a new church, beating the pastor and other believers in the process, and told Christians to stay out.
"I could see the power of Satan working through them when they were lifting the iron web because it was very heavy," a man identified as "Pastor Tanvir" said in a news release posted by Gospel for Asia on Thursday.
The attack reportedly occurred on Sunday, and targeted a church which was being built after a two year delay due to hostility Christians in the area faced. more >>
A retired Army lieutenant colonel with years of experience in the Pentagon believes that American involvement in Syria could have results similar to the Iraq War on religious freedom.
Lt. Col. Robert L. Maginnis, who presently serves as senior fellow for National Security at Family Research Council in Washington, D.C., told The Christian Post about the possible similarity. "Former dictator Saddam Hussein protected Christians but once Saddam was replaced the American-installed Shiite government sat back while Christians were run out of the country," said Maginnis.
"Today Iraqi Christians are living in Jordan and Turkey, meanwhile, the few Christians left in Iraq live in fear of Islamist attacks," he said. more >>
A Christian woman in Pakistan has claimed that she was handed a death sentence simply because she was "thirsty." The mother of five, who is currently in prison on death row, was sentenced to death by hanging in 2009 after being accused of blasphemy – a charge she adamantly denies. She has now released her memoir, "Blasphemy," from prison where she tells her shocking side of the story.
Asia Bibi's case has gained widespread international media attention since she was arrested four years ago on blasphemy charges while working as a fruit-picker in the northeastern area of Pakistan. Bibi co-wrote Blasphemy with French television journalist Anne-Isabelle Tollet. The book details her struggles as a Christian in a predominately Muslim land, including her arrest and sentencing to death. Although the book was released in France in 2011, media outlets have recently released excerpts from the book to keep the memory of Bibi's hardship alive, and a new wave of media attention has been drawn to Bibi's case.
Bibi's imprisonment began shortly after July 2009; she was picking fruit in the northeastern area of Pakistan to make extra income for her husband and five children when her life changed forever. Temperatures in the fruit field reached above a sweltering 100 degrees, and Bibi, parched, chose to drink out of the communal well shared with other female-fruit pickers, all of whom were Muslim. The Muslim women objected to Bibi, a Christian, drinking out of the same metal cup as them, arguing that it was "haram," or the Islamic term for anything forbidden by God. more >>
Egypt's 2012 constitution, drafted and adopted under President Morsi, reflected the Muslim Brotherhood's Islamist goals, giving prominence to Sunni sharia and restricting the rights of non-Muslims. As my colleague and Egypt analyst Samuel Tadros observed on NRO last December, it was a "clear setback for religious freedom."
Undermining religious freedom, of course, is not a small matter, not a mere nuisance to a few outliers. In Egypt, Morsi's Islamist constitution helped provoke a popular uprising by a broad range of groups opposed to the state's forcible imposition of Islamism, which in turn led to the military overthrow of the government on July 3.
The constitution was immediately suspended. "Suggested" articles for a new one, determined by a ten-member government-appointed committee, have been drafted and, over the past few days, have leaked out. more >>
President Barack Obama's administration has been accused of joking about the violent attacks against Christians in Egypt after a question at a press briefing about the "red line" in the crisis.
"With people being killed, Christians in particular being targeted, churches being destroyed, what's the President's red line in Egypt?" White House Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest was asked by a journalist at a press conference last week, to which he replied "Well, I didn't bring my red pen out with me today."
Earnest went on to say that the White House has "condemned in unambiguous terms all of the violence that has been perpetrated in Egypt," and said that the Obama administration is encouraging Egypt's interim government to work toward a non-violent solution. more >>