Tanzania: Mob Of Islamists Destroy Dozens Of Churches, ‘We Want The Heads Of All The Church Pastors’
By George Whitten, Worthy News – “Dozens of Christian worship places have been destroyed by Islamic extremists in Tanzania and church leaders are fleeing its heavily Muslim island of Zanzibar, as the persecution of Christians spreads throughout East Africa, a human rights chief said Monday, November 12.
‘As of May [about] 25 churches and convents have been destroyed. This destruction is mostly confined to [semi-autonomous] Zanzibar where the population is 99 percent Muslim and openly hostile to Christians,’ explained William Stark, regional manager for Africa of advocacy group International Christian Concern (ICC)…
The mob burned down five churches, including the Seven Day Church, the Anglican Church and the Assemblies of God Church, Christians said Other property belonging to Christians in the area was also destroyed including a car belonging to the Anglican Church pastor, according to ICC investigators.
‘As the riots continued, the Evangelical Assemblies of God Church in Tanzania was pulled down. In the following days, unrest in the Muslim community continued, leading to the destruction of more properties across the country and the lives of Christian leaders being threatened,’ Stark said in a statement obtained by Worthy News.
The violence also spread to Zanzibar, where on October 18, a mob of Muslim protestors carrying clubs, swords and machetes invaded two churches shouting ‘We want the head of Bishop Shayo’ as they tried to enter his Roman Catholic church, Christians claimed.
When they failed to break into the church, the mob moved on to the Anglican church of Reverend. Emmanuel Masoud where the crowd broke windows and were seen hacking at the doors while chanting: ‘We need the head of Masoud!’ and We want the heads of all the church pastors in Zanzibar!’
Pastor Lucian Mgaywa of the Church of God in Zanzibar, said in a statement that, ‘These chants caused a lot of panic and some pastors, fearing for their lives, fled the island of Zanzibar to the mainland of Tanzania,’ though the government later ‘intervened and provided security.'” Read more.
Flashback: Tanzania: Muslim Family Severely Beats and Threatens to Kill Christian Convert – “On Tanzania’s semi-autonomous island of Zanzibar, Christians live in a climate of fear. It’s a place where a young man flees the island to escape death threats from his Muslim family, and a Christian who accidentally burned pages of the Quran opts for jail by entering a guilty plea rather than face certain death from a furious mob. Yusuf Abdalla, 23, fled to Moshi, mainland Tanzania, after his family threatened to kill him in June. Having converted to Christianity in October 2010 after hearing the gospel on the radio, he was enrolled at a vocational school in Zanzibar city to learn tailoring when his family found out in March that he had left Islam.” Read more.
Flashback: Tanzania: Muslim Men In Zanzibar Still Beating Their Wives Despite Efforts To Minimize Domestic Violence – “DESPITE ongoing efforts to minimize domestic violence, promote gender equality and empower women, new study in Zanzibar indicates that many women are still beaten and bullied by men including Muslim clerics … but the number of cases being reported to the police remain few, mainly because most women opt to tolerate violence in order to keep her family together. ‘Women have testified to have been bullied and beaten by men, but they think it is improper to report the case. Some get hurt severely in the domestic violence, but treat themselves silently to save the husband or partner,’ the report says.” Read more.