A few weeks ago, I posted an agnostic’s warning about Muslim persecution of Christians around the world.
Posterous‘s blogger, E J Swensson, posted a summary of such incidents which took place around the world in January 2012.
Mr Swensson took as his source Raymond Ibrahim’s January 2012 report for Algemeiner.com of Christian victims at the hands of Muslims. It is a long and alarming summary of persecution which is occurring around the world, including some European countries.
Please remember our brother in Christ Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani, whose death might be imminent.
Let us also pray for other Christian brothers and sisters living in Muslim areas, especially during Lent.
Of his monthly series, Raymond Ibrahim writes:
Because the persecution of Christians in the Islamic world is on its way to reaching epidemic proportions, “Muslim Persecution of Christians” was developed to collate some—by no means all—of the instances of Muslim persecution of Christians that surface each month. It serves two purposes:
1. Intrinsically, to document that which the mainstream media does not: the habitual, if not chronic, Muslim persecution of Christians.
2. Instrumentally, to show that such persecution is not “random,” but systematic and interrelated—that it is rooted in a worldview inspired by Sharia.
Accordingly, whatever the anecdote of persecution, it typically fits under a specific theme, including hatred for churches and other Christian symbols; sexual abuse of Christian women; forced conversions to Islam; apostasy and blasphemy laws; theft and plunder in lieu of jizya (tribute); overall expectations for Christians to behave like cowed “dhimmis” (second-class citizens); and simple violence and murder. Oftentimes it is a combination thereof.
Because these accounts of persecution span different ethnicities, languages, and locales—from Morocco in the west, to India in the east, and throughout the West, wherever there are Muslims—it should be clear that one thing alone binds them: Islam—whether the strict application of Islamic Sharia law, or the supremacist culture born of it.
Please take a few minutes to read his report in full. Below are excerpts:
Kenya: Muslim apostates seeking refuge in Kenya are being tracked and attacked by Muslims from their countries of origin: An Ethiopian who, upon converting to Christianity, was shot by his father, kidnapped and almost killed, is now receiving threatening text messages. Likewise, a Ugandan convert to Christianity is in hiding, his movements severely restricted since “the Muslims are looking to kill me. I need protection and help.”
Kuwait: A royal prince who openly declared that he has converted to Christianity, confirmed the reality that he now might be targeted for killing as an apostate.
Norway: While out for a walk, two Iranian converts to Christianity were stabbed with knives by masked men shouting “infidels!” One of the men stabbed had converted in Iran, was threatened there, and immigrated to Norway, thinking he could escape persecution there.
Somalia: A female convert to Christianity was paraded before a cheering crowd and publicly flogged as punishment for embracing a “foreign religion.” Imprisoned since November, “the public whipping was meant to mark her release.” She received 40 lashes as hundreds of Muslim spectators jeered. An eyewitness said: “I saw her faint. I thought she had died, but soon she regained consciousness and her family took her away.” Likewise, “Somali Islamists arrested a Muslim father after two of his children converted to Christianity” and fled. He is accused of “failing to raise his sons as good Muslims, because “good Muslims cannot convert to Christianity.”
Zanzibar: After being robbed, a Muslim convert to Christianity called police to his house; they discovered a Bible during their inspection. The course of inquiry immediately changed from searching for the thieves to asking why he “was practicing a forbidden faith.” He was imprisoned for eight months without trial, and, since being released, has been rejected by his family and is now homeless and diseased.
Zanzibar: Muslims destroyed two churches: one was torched, while the other demolished—all to yells of “Allahu Akbar.”
Egypt: Before a bishop was going to inaugurate the incomplete Abu Makka church and celebrate the Epiphany mass, a large number of Salafis and Muslim Brotherhood members entered the building, asserting that the church had no license and so no one should pray in it. One Muslim remarked that the building would be suitable for a mosque and a hospital.
Egypt: In the latest round of collective punishment, a mob of over 3000 Muslims attacked Christians in a village because of a rumor that a Coptic man had intimate photos of a Muslim woman on his phone (denied by the man). Coptic homes and shops were looted before being set ablaze. Three were injured, while “terrorized” women and children who lost their homes stood in the streets with no place to go. As usual, it took the army an hour to drive 2 kilometers to the village and none of the perpetrators were arrested.
Indonesia: A sticker on the back of the car of a member of the beleaguered Yasmin church saying “We need a friendly Islam, not an angry Islam,” distributed by the family of the late Muslim president, prompted another Islamic attack on the church: scores of Muslims “terrorized the congregation and attacked several church members.” Since 2008, the congregation has been forced to hold Sunday services on the sidewalk outside the church and then later in the home of parishioners. Not satisfied, hundreds of Muslims later searched and found the private home where members were congregating and holding service and prevented them from worshiping there as well: “It crosses the line now. The protesters now come to the residential area, which is not a public place.” A new report notes that anti-Christian attacks have nearly doubled in the last year.
Nigeria: Soon after jihadis issued an ultimatum giving Christians three days to evacuate the region or die, armed Muslims stormed a church and “opened fire on worshippers as their eyes were closed in prayer,” killing six, including the pastor’s wife. Then, as friends and relatives gathered to mourn the deaths of those slain, “Allahu Akbar” screaming Muslims appeared and opened fire again, killing another 20 Christians. Several other churches were bombed, and seven more killed.
Denmark: In Muslim majority Odense, an Iranian Christian family had two cars consecutively vandalized—windows smashed, seats cut up, and set ablaze—because the cars had crucifixes hanging in them; the family has since relocated to an undisclosed location. Likewise, “Church Ministry” will change its name to “Ministry of Philosophy of Life” to accommodate Muslims.
Sudan: Authorities threatened to arrest church leaders if they engage in “evangelistic activities” and fail to comply with an order for churches to provide names and identifications: “The order was aimed at oppressing Christians amid growing hostilities toward Christianity… Sudanese law prohibits missionaries from evangelizing, and converting from Islam to another religion is punishable by imprisonment or death in Sudan, though previously such laws were not strictly enforced.” Accordingly, days and weeks later, two evangelists were arrested on spurious charges and beat by police.
Turkey: A Christian asylum seeker who fled from Iran because of his faith “was brutally assaulted by his Turkish employer with hot water and his body was severely burned,” due to “the extreme religious views” of his Muslim employer, who “told him he had no rights and that he would not pay him any money,” after the Christian asked for his agreed wages. He “is just one example of hundreds of Iranian Christian asylum seekers who are living in such situations in Turkey.”
Switzerland: A Muslim man hacked his daughter to death for dating a Christian: were they dating in a Muslim-dominated country, the Christian, as so often happens, would have likely received similar treatment.
Syria: The Christian community in Syria has been hit by a series of kidnappings and brutal murders; 100 Christians were killed since the anti-government unrest began; “children were being especially targeted by the kidnappers, who, if they do not receive the ransom demanded, kill the victim, including some who are “cut into pieces and thrown in a river.” These latest reports are reminiscent of the anti-Christian attacks that have become commonplace in Iraq for a decade.
Tajikistan: A young man dressed as Father Frost—the Russian equivalent of Father Christmas—was stabbed to death while visiting relatives and bringing gifts. The Muslim mob beating and stabbing him screamed “you infidel!” leading police to cite “religious hatred” as motivation.
Let us pray for God’s mercy on our fellow Christians and their families. May He deliver them from these situations and give them the fortitude to endure their unimaginable trials in the meantime.