Nepal’s Christian Communities Attacked
CSI’s local partners in Nepal are reporting a worrying increase in attacks on Christian communities in the Hindu-majority country. They say the spate of violent incidents began in the Dharan district of eastern Nepal. The catalyst was the construction of a new church in August. Radical Hindu groups objected to the siting of the church near a Hindu temple and issued threats against the pastor. The case was referred to the district government where officials sided with the Hindu groups and closed the church down. Immediately after this violence flared again when videos were spread on social media showing an indigenous tribal group, the Limbus, slaughtering cows in Dharan. Although the Limbus traditionally eat beef, the Nepalese government has banned its consumption. The cow is the national animal of Nepal and is regarded as sacred in the Hindu religion. Angry Hindus filed a complaint with the police leading to the arrest of members of the ethnic group. When Christians were then also accused of slaughtering sacred cows Hindu protests broke out across the region, our partners say. The local administration responded to the increasing violence by imposing a curfew. The CSI project partner is concerned about the difficult situation facing many Christians and is trying to mediate with local leaders. For example, Pastor Nabin Tharu and her family were smeared with black paint and dragged out of the village where they lived. They have not been allowed to return to their home and church.
30 Christians Taken Hostage in Nigeria
Terrorists on Saturday (Oct. 7) kidnapped more than 30 Christians in southern Kaduna state, Nigeria, residents said. The assailants ambushed and took the Christians away at gunpoint at about 11 a.m. as they worked on a communal farm in Chikuri, Chikun County, said area resident Victor Dabo in a text message. “Over 30 Christian farmers who were cultivating a farm have been abducted in one fell swoop,” Dabo told Morning Star News. “Please pray for the Chikuri Christian community.” Another resident, Dogara Peter, said his mother and sister were among those kidnapped as they worked on the farm. “The terrorists kidnapped 30 of our Christian villagers as they were working on a farm which belongs to Mr. Maikudi, an elderly member of our community,” Peter told Morning Star News. “My mother and sister are among those kidnapped by the terrorists. This incident has thrown our community into confusion. The terrorists are yet to contact us.”
Nigerian blasphemy victim to learn fate on November 27
Rhoda Jatau, the Christian healthcare worker presently standing trial for blasphemy at the High Court in Bauchi State, northern Nigeria, will finally know her fate at the end of November – close to one year after her trial began. The court has set November 27 as the date for ruling on a “no-case submission” request by defense attorneys who hope to have all the charges brought against her by the Bauchi authorities dismissed. If the charges are not dropped, Jatau’s defence team will have their work cut out to convince the court that she is not guilty of blasphemy against Islam – a capital offense in northern Nigeria.
Ethnic cleansing in Nagorno Karabakh: the high cost of neo-Ottoman ambitions
The deed is done: Azerbaijan has ethnically and religiously cleansed Nagorno Karabakh of Armenian Christians. The military offensive capped a nine-month blockade designed to starve the population into submission. Within days, over 100,000 terrified residents fled to Armenia. Their political leaders are now hostages in Azerbaijan. Christian Solidarity International and other human rights groups had long sounded the alarm about potential genocide in Nagorno Karabakh. In August, Luis Moreno Ocampo, the first chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, echoed these warnings. An explicit threat came from Azerbaijan itself. Two weeks before the military assault, Elchin Amirbayov, a senior advisor to the president of Azerbaijan, declared that “a genocide may happen” if Nagorno Karabakh doesn’t accept Azerbaijani rule and give up its principal political demand – the right to self-determination. The UN Security Council remained inert despite these warnings. Its paralysis did not arise from the customary Russian and Chinese vetoes. It reflects instead the growing geopolitical dependence of all the Council’s permanent members on an emerging pan-Turkic imperial constellation. At the head of this constellation is the militarily powerful NATO member Turkey, ruled by an authoritarian party related to the Muslim Brotherhood. But the weight of oil-rich Azerbaijan in the neo-Ottoman constellation is increasing rapidly. Read the full article here
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