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Newsdesk - 19 October 2017

18 October 2017


DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO – Christians face potential new threat as Islamist group calls for jihad

An Islamist group in the DRC has released a video calling for volunteers to wage jihad. In the video, which has been publicised on Islamic State media outlets, a jihadist with three child soldiers calls for volunteers and calls for the DRC to be turned into an Islamic state in Central Africa.

Christians in the conflict-ravaged north-eastern regions of the DRC have endured years of sporadic attacks from Islamic militants of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), which has been fighting to make Uganda an Islamic state since the late 1990s.

In one of the deadliest ADF attacks in DRC, 50 Christians were hacked to death in the village of Rwangoma in August 2016. Although the call for jihad comes from a little-known group (called The City of Monotheism and Monotheists) Christians now face a new Islamist threat.

The video has been publicised on Islamic State media outlets.

From the Long War Journal here



EGYPT – Church leader stabbed to death in daylight; attacker says “I sensed Allah telling me to go kill him”

Samaan Shehata, a 45-year-old church minister from the village of Beni Sweif, south of Cairo, was stabbed to death in a Cairo suburb on Thursday 12 October.

CC BY-SA 3.0

Samaan was married with three children, including two young girls.

Egyptian police have arrested the attacker. Residents say the attacker was a local person known for verbally abusing and throwing stones at Christians.

A lawyer who was present when police later questioned the attacker told journalists that the attacker said he murdered the minister because “I sensed Allah telling me to go kill him.”

Members of Samaan’s congregation were upset by a later report on an Egyptian news site, citing the Interior Ministry, which claimed the attacker had mental health problems, casting doubt on what appeared to be a religiously motivated attack.

From Wataninet here



IRAQ & SYRIA – Christians feel “abandoned” and “betrayed” by the West

Iraqi and Syrian Christians feel “abandoned, even betrayed” by the international community, says one church leader, who represents Christian communities across the Middle East.

Western politicians do not take interest in the plight of Christians – despite the fact they have been the targets of violence and genocide for years – because, “We don't have the numbers, we don't have the oil, we don't pose any terrorist threat to the civilized world,” he explains. “We have been put aside and neglected,” he added. 

Many Iraqi Christians remain displaced, with no funding to rebuild the towns in which they used to live, while Western countries are denying Christians official refugee status.  

From CNA/EWTN News here



NIGERIA – Muslim Fulani herders continue onslaught against Christian communities

Muslim Fulani herdsmen attacked Mai Farin Mota, killing four people in the predominantly Christian village in Plateau State. Eyewitnesses report that the attack began at 9pm on 13 October. The army and police failed to respond while the attack continued for over six hours, despite frantic phone calls for help.

Earlier on 11 October in a similar attack in nearby Jebu Miango, 10km from Jos, herdsmen destroyed several houses and killed three people. The community later protested against the soldiers at the nearby military checkpoint after a victim reported that some of the attackers were wearing military uniforms.

A local Christian also reported that a soldier taunted him, “Why don’t you ask your God to guard you?” when approached for help.

There has been an upsurge in Fulani terrorist attacks in Nigeria, and local reports say up to 30 people have been killed in the last month. The recent murder of a former top civil servant in one such attack has prompted the national parliament to call for an investigation.

From Global Christian News here