Category: Religious Persecution

Crackdown in Iran Hits Official Churches

Iran persecutes christians In a rare crackdown on a concentrated area, Iranian authorities have arrested Christians living in the country’s third largest city in what is seen as a tactic to discourage Muslims and converts to Christianity from attending official churches.

Authorities have arrested leaders and members of churches meeting in buildings, as well as some from underground churches.

Pakistani Woman Charged with ‘Blasphemy’ for Refusing Islam

Pakistan A young mother has been falsely accused of “blaspheming” Muhammad, the prophet of Islam, because she rebuffed attempts by relatives who had converted to Islam to force her to renounce her Christian faith, family members said.

Speaking ill of Muhammad in Pakistan is punishable by life imprisonment or death under Pakistan’s internationally condemned blasphemy laws.

Court in Egypt Court Sentences Priest from Attacked Church Building

egypt A priest in Egypt was sentenced this week to six months in jail for a minor construction violation at his church building, while no one in a mob that burned the same structure down has been arrested.

Coupled with the absence of prosecution against those who burned down the church building, the ruling is clear evidence of persecution and a legal double standard between Christians and Muslims.

Suicide Bombers Attack Worship Service in Jos, Nigeria

Nigeria Two suicide bombers from the Boko Haram Islamist sect drove a car laden with bombs into the worship service of a Church of Christ in Nigeria (COCIN) congregation, killing at least one Christian girl and injuring dozens of other church members, sources said.

A man claiming to be a spokesman for Boko Haram reportedly claimed responsibility for the blast.

Rumors of Imminent Execution of Iranian Pastor Unconfirmed

Yousef Nadarkhani Lawyers for an Iranian pastor awaiting a final decision on his death sentence have not received communication from authorities that their client will be executed, despite reports that his death is imminent.

Rumors of an imminent execution of Yousef Nadarkhani — who is a pastor in a movement considered to be theologically a cult of Christianity — were leaked this week after a source close to one of his lawyers contacted international media.

Burma Troops ‘Kill, Torture’ Christian Kachins Despite Ceasefire Pledge

Burma Burmese troops kill or torture civilians and destroy churches and even entire villages of the predominantly Christian Kachin minority despite pledges from Burma’s nominally civilian government that it seeks ceasefire agreements with ethnic groups, investigators say.

Rights group Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) said it recorded “grave human rights abuses” during a three week visit to the Rangoon and Kachin State on the China-Burma border.