Bulletin of Christian Persecution July 27-August 29, 2011

July 27, 2011
Lebanon (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
or over two week the Maronite Church has been involved in strenuous efforts to reclaim large areas of land which has been taken over by part of the Shiite population of Lassa, a village in the district of Jbeil Mount Lebanon.

The affair erupted when official land surveyors tried survey land on which stands a chapel dedicated to Our Lady. Since 2011 the building has been used, against the advice of the Church as a place of worship for women. In spite of all the past efforts to regulate this sensitive and highly symbolic issue the chapel key was never returned to the Church. For several days the population has prevented the team, with the threat of arms, from carrying out the survey.

July 28, 2011
Egypt
An exchange of harsh words on July 25 between Ruth, a Christian woman, and Gassem Fouad, a Muslim man who had parked his tricycle in front of her home, escalated into assault by the man on Ruth and other Christian villagers, and the arrest of one Copt. After Ruth, who is 5 months pregnant, was assaulted, a Muslim mob waited for Coptic farmers to return from the fields, where they were intercepted and beaten with iron rods and pipes. Update HERE.

Tanzania
Influential Muslims on this East African island have begun building what appears to be a hotel on a 100-year-old burial site owned by an Anglican church, Christian leaders said.

Church leaders with ownership papers for the land told Compass they are disturbed that authorities have taken no action since they filed a police complaint in December about the seizure of the burial site three kilometers (nearly two miles) from Zanzibar city’s airport.

July 29, 2011
Nigeria
Christians throughout Nigeria are fasting to invoke divine intervention and protection from the Islamic cult, Boko Haram, that has threatened to attack Nigerian Christians on the anniversary of their founder’s death.

Due to heightened insecurity, church attendance has dropped significantly in recent weeks. Less than half of those that attended church regularly can be found in attendance due to safety concerns. Bombs have been going off on a daily basis in the northeastern city of Maiduguri, while the Nigerian capital of Abuja faced a bomb attack on a car park last month. Update HERE.

Iraq
While the story of Islamist violence against Christians, particularly in Egypt, has continued to get a fair degree of attention in the U.S. media, one story that has been lost in the shuffle is the effort to establish a safe haven — The Nineveh Plain Province — for indigenous minorities in Iraq.

The plan is to declare the Nineveh Plane Province as the gathering point for indigenous minorities in Iraq and then provide the security and infrastructure necessary for them to live in safety. The province would not be restricted to Assyrian Christians, but to all indigenous minorities living in Iraq. The proponents of the province in the U.S. are asking Congress for $128 million to implement their proposal.

The Assyrian American Coalition, one of the major advocates of the Nineveh Plain Province Solution, asserts that establishing such a province would allow “indigenous people [In Iraq] to gain a stable foothold within the country from which they could sustain, develop, and grow a base population in a secure and stable environment.” This initiative has gotten very little coverage in the United States.

July 30, 2011
Indonesia
Tensions have heightened against religious minority communities after Thursday’s sentencing of three men for their part in a brutal attack on the Ahmadiyya Muslim community in Cikeusik, West Java, in February. The men were handed three to six month sentences by the court over the attack, which killed three people.
Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) has voiced concern over continuing violations of religious freedom in Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim-majority nation. It said the sentences were “astonishingly lenient”.

The sentences were passed on the same day as the World Evangelical Alliance’s Religious Liberty Commission warned that the GKI Yasmin Church in Bogor, West Java, could face mass violence if continuing tensions are not addressed. The church has been forced to hold open air worship on Sundays after it was closed by authorities, violating a Supreme Court ruling permitting the church to operate.

August 2, 2011
Iraq (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
A priest and at least 19 others were injured Tuesday by an autobomb that detonated outside a church in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk. More than 40 homes were damaged by the blast. Terrorists in Iraq have stepped up attacks against the country’s minority Christian population.

August 3, 2011
Indonesia (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Two homes used as churches were burned to the ground in Riau on Tuesday night. The incidents are the latest in a series of attacks on minority religious groups in Indonesia that have prompted international condemnation, including from the United States and European Union. Update HERE. More HERE.

USA (Hat tip to CreepingSharia)
A computer hacker took control of more than a dozen church Web sites hosted by a Perrysburg, Ohio designer this week, replacing their regular content with an appeal that Christians convert to Islam.

August 4, 2011
Malaysia (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Selangor state exco member Datuk Hasan Ali of PAS has defended Wednesday night’s raid by the State Religious Department (JAIS) on the Damansara Utama Methodist Church. “We found evidence of proselytisation towards Muslims,” he said in a statement Thursday. “We carried out the raid after receiving information that there were Muslims who attended a breaking-of-fast event at the church. Update HERE.

UK (Hat tip to FamilySecurityMatters)
A family of albino Muslims in Coventry are being terrorised by bigots because their daughter married a man from another religion and converted to Christianity. The so-called “honour” retribution has included smashed windows at their Edgwick home, vandalised cars and death threats.

August 6, 2011
Pakistan
Another young Christian woman in Pakistan has been abducted and forced to convert to Islam and marry her kidnapper. Despite a formal complaint, police did not intervene because the author of the crime is a “respectable businessman.”

India
Four months after a recent convert to Christianity from Islam in eastern India’s West Bengal state was stripped and beaten, about 50 Muslim extremists yesterday disrupted a prayer meeting held in her home, threatening to burn it down if she did not return to Islam, area Christians said.

August 10, 2011
Nigeria
Authorities say a clash between soldiers and youths in northeastern Nigeria over the arrest of suspected members of a radical Muslim sect has killed one person and wounded two.

Army Lt. Olumide Olukoya says fighting started Tuesday. He says a woman died from gunshot wounds in the clash after authorities arrested clerics and suspected members of the Boko Haram sect. He says about 150 rioting youths later torched a government building and a Catholic church.

Boko Haram, whose name means “Western education is sacrilege” in the local Hausa language, is responsible for a rash of killings targeting security officers, local leaders and clerics in the area over the last year.
Update HERE.

Egypt
Egypt’s government on Wednesday proposed an anti-discrimination amendment to its criminal code, mostly aimed at the troubled Christian minority which has been the target of sectarian attacks.

Women and minorities in Egypt complain of discrimination, but it is enshrined in the law regarding Coptic Christians, who are not allowed to build houses of worship without presidential permission.

August 11, 2011
Uganda
A 14-year-old girl in western Uganda is still unable to walk 10 months after her father tortured her for leaving Islam and putting her faith in Christ, according to area Christians.

August 12, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to BigHollywood)
A group of Christians have been attacked by a mob of Muslims in a park near where Osama bin Laden was killed in Pakistan. The Christian group was gathered to watch a 1979 movie called “Jesus,” depicting the life of Christ when they were set upon by the extremists. The assault on the church workers included a beating as well as a smashed projector before the police intervened.

August 15, 2011
Iraq (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
A bomb exploded last night near the St Ephraim Syrian Orthodox Church in Kirkuk, which is just a few hundreds of metres from the Chaldean cathedral, in central part of the city. The device blew up at 1.30 am and there were no victims. The damages to the church were however huge (pictured).

Today’s incident is the latest in a string of attacks against Christians and their places of worship. On 2 August, a car bomb exploded in front of the Holy Family Syrian Catholic Church, wounding 15 people. The bomb had been placed inside a car, parked near the building. On the same day, another bomb also placed in a car parked near a Presbyterian church was defused before it went off.

August 16, 2011
Malaysia (Hat tip to JihadWatch via thereligionofpeace)
Muslims in Malaysia have demanded that action be taken against those who proselytize Muslims to Christianity as 22 Islamic non-governmental organizations called for laws banning apostasy.

The NGOs issued a statement stressing their commitment to “defending the faith of Muslims held in this country from … encroachment,” according to the Malaysian Insider and Malaysiakini. The NGOs sought to uphold existing legislation against proselytizing Muslims.

August 17, 2011
Iran
Iran has seized 6,500 copies of the Bible in northwest Iran in what appears to be the latest crackdown by Iranian authorities against Christianity in the country. Few details are known about the seizure, however, Christian news agency, Mohabat News, reports that Dr. Majid Abhari, adviser to the social issues committee of the parliament in Iran stated, “These missionaries with reliance on huge money and propaganda are trying to deviate our youth.”

According to persecution advocacy group, Voice of the Martyrs, missionary work is banned in Iran, though Christian conversion has been growing in the majority Islamic country in recent years. Conversion from Islam to another religion, known as apostasy, is also a crime in Iran, and offenders are often arrested and tried in court. Recent legislation is aiming to have the crime of apostasy punishable by death.

August 19, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
A Pakistani Christian woman who was abducted in 2009 has escaped from her captor. After Arifa Alfred, 27, was drugged and kidnapped in central Pakistan, she awoke and was shown papers stating that she had converted to Islam and married her captor. After two years of torture, she escaped on August 1.

Indonesia (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Bogor’s controversial mayor says he has a new reason not to allow the GKI Yasmin church to open – the name of the street on which it is built has an Islamic name.

August 21, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to FamilySecurityMatters)
A Christian family consisting of 26 persons, including women and children, lived in slavery for over 30 years. Forced to work on a farm belonging to a wealthy Muslim landowner Rahim Yar Khan, they only recently managed to regain freedom. Reduced to servitude for three decades, the family members escaped their captor through the intervention of the leaders of the Catholic Diocese of Bahawalpur.

August 23, 2011
Sudan
More than seven months after Muslim extremists burned its church building, a Presbyterian Church of the Sudan (PCOS) congregation is still afraid to meet for worship, according to Christian sources. The Rev. Maubark Hamad said his church in Wad Madani, 138 kilometers (85 miles) southeast of Khartoum, has not been able to rebuild since the Jan. 15 devastation due to the congregation’s meager resources.

Christian sources said they are increasingly fearful as Muslim extremists pose more threats against Christians in an attempt to rid what they call Dar al Islam, the “Land of Islam,” of Christianity.

August 25, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to Grendel)
A group of Muslims have kidnapped a 14 year old Christian girl from her home under the threat of a gun and in front of witnesses. Mohammad Tayeb Butt along with four other Muslims raided the house of Rashid Masih in broad daylight, pointed the gun to the head of his daughter Mehek forcing her to climb aboard a white car .

Two young Christians, Imran Masih and Mehboob Masih, tried to rescue the girl, but Mohammad Tayeb pointed the gun at them and threatened to shoot. “She is a Choori” the Muslim shouted, at Mehek, using the derogatory and insulting slur used for the Christians. He also added that the Choori Mehek will be purified “convert to Islam and become my mistress.”

August 26, 2011
Malaysia (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
A committee was formed by the Selangor Government to investigate the dispute on the check conducted by Jais on the Damansara Utama Methodist Church. Jais had on Aug 3 entered the premises of DUMC, where a thanksgiving dinner was being held after being tipped off on an alleged attempt to proselytise Muslims. The dinner, attended by about 100 people, included 12 Muslims.

“This issue should be explained to the non-Muslims so that they understand better why proselytisation is such a sensitive issue for the Muslims,” he said at the Poh Toh Festival Dinner 2011 here last night.

Norway (Hat tip to IslamInEurope for translation via Jihadwatch)
“Ali” had boiling water poured on him at the Hå asylum center in Jæren, after he converted to Christianity and did not fast on the Ramadan. Now he and other converts fear for their lives.

‘If you don’t return to Islam, we’ll kill you’ “Ali” was told by fellow residents at the center. He doesn’t want his name or picture published for fear of the other residents. If the Afghan authorities hear of his conversion, he risks being sentenced to death by stoning he he’ll be deported back home.

Bangladesh
A tortured Christian activist, a former Muslim who fled rough police and Islamic extremists in his native Bangladesh. is in hiding in Hong Kong.

August 29, 2011

Iran

The whereabouts of an evangelical pastor in Iran remained unknown Saturday, August 27, some 10 days after he was detained by Iranian security forces as part of a reported government crackdown on Christian converts.

Abdolreza ‘Matthias’ Haghnejad, of the evangelical Church of Iran denomination, “was re-arrested August 17″ by Iranian authorities in the northern city of Rasht while making a pastoral visit, according to Iranian Christians and human rights investigators.


Produced by Political Islam.com
Publisher: Bill Warner; Edited by Asma Marwan
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