Archive for 04/20/2012

South Sudanese Christians Trapped in Hostile North Fear Islamic Gov’t and Muslims in General Will Turn on Them

04/20/2012 Leave a comment

Daniel 11:43, “He will gain control of the treasures of gold and silver and all the riches of Egypt, with the Libyans and Nubians in submission.”

Compass Direct News – “JUBA, South Sudan, April 19 (CDN) — As tensions between Sudan and South Sudan turn into military combat on the border, predominantly Christian citizens of southern origin trapped in Sudan fear the Islamic government and Muslims in general will turn on them, sources told Compass.

Officially foreigners though many of the half million southern Sudanese in Sudan have never lived anywhere else, the ethnic southerners have been granted another 30 days as of April 8 to register or leave the country. But the government has forbidden hundreds of ethnic southerners from boarding planes for Juba, saying they require documents from the southern capital in order to leave.

‘They closed all ways in front of us in order to prevent us from travel to our country,’ said one church leader.

South Sudanese Christians were surprised to learn that all flights and land routes to South Sudan were closed to them on April 9, with no information forthcoming on when they would be allowed to leave, sources said. The Sudanese government last week declared it was in a state of war with South Sudan, adding to the fears of the trapped southern Sudanese.

Church leaders who wish to remain in the north said they have not been provided enough information on how to register for legal status. And many South Sudanese fear that registering will only help officials to monitor their movements.” Read more.

Syria: US, France, 13 Other Nations Hint at Use of Force Against Assad if Violence Continues

04/20/2012 Leave a comment

By Edward Cody, The Washington Post – “PARIS — The United States, France and 13 other nations demanded Thursday that Syria immediately cease military operations against rebel forces and allow unfettered deployment of U.N. observers, suggesting that use of force will be considered if Damascus fails to comply.

The stand, at a French-organized meeting of foreign ministers and other officials from the ‘Friends of Syria’ group, signaled a growing impatience among Western leaders and Arab allies over Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s delay in putting into practice a six-point peace plan, including a truce, that was negotiated by joint U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan but has yet to halt the killing.

Despite its implied threat of seeking U.N. authorization for stronger measures, however, the declaration also underlined the difficulty of applying pressure on Syria as long as Russia and China refuse to go along. Both nations wield veto power in the U.N. Security Council, and although they endorsed Annan’s peace plan, they have rejected calls for more forceful action against the Syrian government.

Significantly, Russia and China declined invitations to attend the meeting Thursday.

French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe, who spoke for the group, said a U.N. observer mission in Syria is ‘at a critical moment’ because of ‘the refusal of Syria to carry out its commitments.’ France will soon submit to the Security Council a resolution outlining what Juppe called a ‘robust’ mission that he hoped Russia and China could be persuaded to approve.” Read more.

Russia: ‘Syria faces a catastrophic civil war if both sides fail to take advantage of ceasefire’ – “Syria faces a catastrophic civil war if both sides in the crisis that has gripped the country for over a year fail to take advantage of the current fragile ceasefire there, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said on Friday. ‘A very important event in the developments in the country has come about,’ the ministry said in a statement on its website. ‘The issue in Syria now is the choice between a transition towards peaceful, nationwide talks or a descent into civil war.’ … UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said on Thursday that he had seen ‘troubling’ evidence of ceasefire violations by both government troops and rebel forces.” Read more.

‘Deliberate and Growing’: Christian Persecution From ‘Arab Spring’ Insurgents in Syria Becoming a Steadily Growing Reality, ‘It Will Never Be the Same Anymore’

04/20/2012 5 comments

“Jordan (MNN) ― Refugees who have fled to Jordan from Syria are telling mission leaders supported by Christian Aid Mission about deliberate, new persecution from the ‘Arab Spring’ insurgents who are seeking to overthrow the brutal Assad regime in Damascus.

Nearly 100,000 Christians so far have fled from Homs and other cities being targeted by government forces, but it is no longer just to escape the crossfire. Now, more reports are revealing that a new wave of persecution is deliberate and growing. As a result, Virginia-based Christian Aid Mission is sending additional aid to help the growing numbers of refugees which have fled to Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey.

‘It is over; we can’t get back what we lost,’ said one discouraged Christian refugee here in Jordan. ‘It will never be the same anymore for me or my family. We’ve lost hope.’ He said he had to flee with his family at night, because anti-Christian persecution in Syria is becoming a steadily growing reality.

‘I had my own business. I ran a supermarket, and we were financially stable. Unfortunately, that’s not the case anymore. Our dreams vanished when a group of terrorists threatened to kill my family, burn our house, and set fire to the supermarket if I didn’t pay them $7,000.

‘I paid the amount, hoping that they would leave us alone, but they did not. Instead, they kidnapped me for a whole week. They only let me go on one condition: that each month I would pay them the same amount.

‘What do you think I could do? I fled. I packed our stuff, taking only the basics. I took my family and came to Jordan. My son, Omar, has one year left to finish his bachelor’s degree, but now his dreams have vanished as well. I used to be a business owner…but now I am a laborer who can hardly provide the day-to-day basics for my family.’

Meanwhile, indigenous missionaries supported by Christian Aid are standing in the gap to help by visiting Syrian refugees in northern Jordan, sometimes every day. Like the grocer, they also have left everything. Many have lost sons and other family members since the fighting began.

Another older woman told native missionaries how close death is for Syrian Christians, ‘I was talking with friends next to our building when suddenly, from every direction, we heard gun shots. At the same moment, I watched my friends fall dead in front of me. I lost my friends in one second. I was also hit by a bullet. It fragmented my knee, and now I can’t walk normally.’

‘Only three weeks ago, two car bombs detonated in the middle of a Christian neighborhood in Syria, close to the Syrian Air Intelligence building. The explosions caused massive damage, turning walls to rubble.'” Read more.

India: Christian Couple Distributing Pamphlets About Christianity Arrested in Muslim Kashmir for ‘Promoting Enmity’

04/20/2012 Leave a comment

“The Jammu and Kashmir Police has arrested a Christian couple on charges of ‘promoting enmity’ while they were allegedly distributing pamphlets about Christianity in the border township of Bandipora in north Kashmir.

The police said the couple from Delhi, along with a local girl, was distributing pamphlets in the Bandipora market when people raised a hue and cry and called the police. Sensing trouble, the police seized the pamphlets and immediately whisked them away for sustained questioning.

The police later registered a case under section 153A Ranbir Penal Code (promoting enmity between groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, etc) at the Bandipora police station. Under this section, the law prescribes imprisonment of up to three years, or with fine, or with both. In case of an offence relating to religion, the punishment could extend to five years.

‘We have arrested the duo. The woman was seen distributing pamphlets in the market place where she had gone shopping,’ said Bashir Ahmad Khan, superintendent of police, Bandipora district.

The couple and the girl have been detained and questioned in the police station. Police sources said during questioning, they said they were not doing anything unconstitutional or illegal in the town.

The police said they were arrested to avoid any law and order breakdown in the area. ‘There was lot of hue and cry which could have created law and order problem in the area. Therefore we took them into custody as a preventive measure to avoid any crisis in the district,’ said a police official.

The arrest comes six months after the police arrested a Christian priest in Srinagar in November last year.” Read more.

Egypt: Tens of Thousands of ‘Protesters’ Demand Army Retreat From Power

04/20/2012 Leave a comment

Make no mistake about it, this protest is largely comprised of Islamists who want nothing less than full control of Egypt and its people, including the military …

By Shaimaa Fayed and Edmund Blair, Reuters – “Tens of thousands of Egyptians demanded on Friday that their military rulers stick to a pledge to hand over power by mid-year after a row over who can run in the presidential election raised doubts about the army’s commitment to democracy.

Two leading Islamist candidates, one representing the Muslim Brotherhood who was seen as the frontrunner, were among those disqualified this week from a vote that starts on May 23-24, drawing a storm of criticism from supporters and the candidates.

Khairat al-Shater, the Brotherhood’s former candidate, said his ejection showed the generals who have ruled since Hosni Mubarak was ousted last year had no serious intention of quitting. The movement is now fielding a reserve candidate.

‘We are all here to protect the revolution and complete its demands,’ said Sayed Gad, 38, a pharmacist and Brotherhood member. He had joined a protest which attracted both Islamists and liberals to a packed Tahrir Square in central Cairo, although the two sides were not united on all their demands.

A council of generals, who stepped in 14 months ago after mass demonstrations in Tahrir and elsewhere had sapped Mubarak’s power, has led Egypt through a turbulent transition punctuated by spasms of violence and frequent protests against their handling of the move to democracy.

The army says it will stick to its timetable to hand power to a new president by July 1 and has promised to oversee a fair vote. But some remarks from military officials suggesting the army might also seek now to have a new constitution in place before that handover – an impossibly tight deadline for many – has added to popular worries about the military’s ambitions.” Read more.

Flashback: Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood Takes on Egyptian Military – “You can forgive Egyptians for concluding that the Muslim Brotherhood cannot be trusted. After claiming that it is not trying to control parliament, that it favours consensus over monopoly and that it would not field a candidate in the presidential elections, Egypt’s most powerful political movement has broken all its promises… The movement’s brazen push for power is a dramatic departure from its decades-old approach of cautious…” Read more.

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