Authorities break into church property in Sudan, beat and arrest Christians

November 8, 2013 by  
Filed under newsletter-world

The authorities have been bulldozing church buildings in SudanSudan, November 04, 2013: The Sudanese authorities have been accused of helping a Muslim businessman to take over church property after breaking into the site and beating and arresting Christians present.

Police and security forces used a truck and two Land Cruisers to batter down the fence around Khartoum Bahri Evangelical Church on 5 October as Muslim onlookers shouted “Allahu Akhbar” (“Allah is great”).

Officers beat several Christians who were in the compound, arresting some of them along with church leader Dawood Fadul. They were all released later that day.

The authorities claimed that parts of the property belonged to a Muslim investor who had accompanied them on the raid. They said that he had signed a contract that gave him the right to invest in land that is part of the church property. Church members were not told who gave him the contract.

The government, which has been ruthlessly destroying or taking over church buildings since the secession of the mainly Christian South Sudan in July 2011, is believed to be behind the move.

The Muslim businessman has seized parts of the site with help from the authorities and is expected to take over more imminently.

Christians in Sudan have faced a sharp increase in persecution since South Sudan became an independent nation. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has been carrying out his repeated promise to strengthen sharia law and make the country 100% Islamic following the split.

The US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) said in a statement earlier this year:

With the independence of South Sudan, senior Sudanese government officials have called for a more comprehensive and rigid application of Sharia law in Sudan, where southerners who are Christian have been subject to a range of religious freedom violations. In particular, there have been credible reports of the destruction of churches, refusal to permit construction of new churches and other forms of intimidation and harassment.

Christian workers have been arrested, interrogated and deported, and converts from Islam pursued.

Barnabas Fund has been helping Christians of Southern origin trapped in Sudan to return to their homeland through our Exodus mission.

– morning star news

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