Latest news > Newsdesk - 16 November 2017

Newsdesk - 16 November 2017

22 November 2017



NIGERIA – Nine killed in continuing Muslim Fulani violence against Christians

Muslim Fulani herdsmen killed nine people and injured five after surrounding their vehicle and firing upon them while they were returning from a nearby market.

The attack took place in Plateau State on the evening of 7 November, as Fulani herdsmen intensified their violence on a Christian community.

The locals have lost confidence in the federal government to protect them and are calling on the United Nations and other international bodies to intervene in what they say is a “typical case of genocide and systematic ethnic cleansing” by Islamists to force them off their land. “I think the Fulani leaders are not ready for peace,” a local council representative said.

A Christian leader commented: “We have continued to be forced into mourning the death of some our members for no just cause. Whatever it is, our faith is dependent on Jesus Christ, our Saviour.”

Massacres of Christian communities are increasing with over 55 killed in October alone. The attack on Mai Farin Mota and Jebu Miango where seven people were killed, was just one of many.

From Global Christian News here



PAKISTAN – Five Christian families flee after fake news “blasphemy” allegation

Five Christian families have been forced to leave their village and go into hiding after a Christian teenager was accused of “blasphemy” on social media.

Sonu Arshad, an 18-year-old from the village of Sukheki in the northern Punjab province, wasaccused of “blasphemy” on a Facebook page designed to mimic a news channel.

The post displayed a picture of the teenager and called for local Muslims to “burn his church and give him the death penalty.”

On 10 November, after news of the “blasphemy” accusation spread, a Muslim mob gathered in the village after Friday prayers. Although police intervened, Ashad’s family and four others fled the village, fearing for their safety.

From CLAAS here



CHINA – Christians told to believe in the Party, instead of Jesus

Local party officials in south-east China are “encouraging” Christians to replace Christian posters with portraits of President Xi Jinping in their homes, as part of campaign to secularize the region.

At a meeting last month, Communist Party leaders in Yugan county described the presence of religion as a “crisis.”

Qi Yan, the Chairman of the People’s Congress in Huangjinbu township – where there are between 5,000 - 6,000 Christian families – stated, “Many rural people are ignorant. They think God is their saviour. After our cadres’ work, they’ll realize their mistakes and think: we should no longer rely on Jesus, but on the party for help.”

One resident in the county told journalists that poor Christian families who were open about their faith faced cuts in government aid: “Some families put up gospel couplets on their front doors during the Lunar New Year; some also hung paintings of the cross. But they’ve all been torn down,” he said. “They all have their belief and, of course, they didn’t want to take them down. But there is no way out. If they don’t agree to do so, they won’t be given their quota from the poverty-relief fund.”

From Washington Post here



EGYPT – Islamic State issues fresh threat against Egyptian Christians

Islamic State (IS) affiliated Wafa Media Foundation (WMF) incited further massacres against Egyptian Christians, referring to them as “infidel fighters” on 10 November.

The WMF, a propaganda body, states that because Christians continue to build churches and have media networks to promote Christianity, they do not accept the condition of submission (dhimmi) imposed on Christians in Islamic societies. Therefore, they must be killed and their churches attacked.

This year, in an attempt at religious cleansing, Islamists carried out numerous deadly attacks on Egyptian Christians. On Palm Sunday, two churches were bombed in Alexandria and the Tanta region, killing 45 and injuring more than 130. On 26 May, IS slaughtered 29 and injured 22 Christians travelling to a monastery in Minya.

From Fides here



RUSSIA – Majority of those charged under religion law Christians

A majority of those charged under Russia’s religion laws, following their introduction last year, have been Christians. Since Putin’s government amended anti-terror laws to crack down on “extremism” in July 2016, a total of 202 cases have been brought to court. Of these, 53% have been against Protestant Christians or organisations. Most have been charged with violating restrictions on “missionary activity.” Courts can hand down a fine of up to 50,000 roubles (equivalent to £643) for breaking the law.

In April, a Protestant pastor was the first person to be deported under the regulations, which are officially aimed at disrupting terrorist activity, but have been used to target Evangelical Christians and other religious minorities.

From Barnabas Fund Project Partners