What Would You Do If Your City Was At Risk Of Being Under Sharia Law?
Christians living in areas where Sharia law is implemented face extreme persecution. Sharia law is a fundamental Islamic law that influences many aspects of everyday life with legal punishments. Their faith is illegal, and some of them risk honor killings if it is discovered that they are Christians. It would be very difficult to live in such a place, and we hurt for our brothers and sisters who face this kind of persecution day in and day out. But what would you do if your city was at risk of being under Sharia law? Some Christians in Kenya are facing this very dilemma…. Mandera County residents, in a report tabled by the Center for Human Rights and Public Utilities (CHRPU) on September 13, called on the Kenya Inspector-General of Police to act against the ‘Gaare’ militia group. The group advocates for secession of Moyale, Isiolo, Mandera and parts of Wajir counties of Kenya. They have strong Islamic ties, and claim a large following in these counties. The militia is blamed for the June 2013 inter-clan conflicts that left 16 dead and more than 20 houses burned, and many forcefully evicted. The violence caused hundreds of families to flee into the surrounding forest, while migrants to the area have relocated, in fear of more attacks. Violent clashes and secession calls have caused increasing disquiet among Christians and missionaries in the North and Coast counties of Kenya. Church members and missionaries say the actions are all part of a wider plan to introduce Sharia into the predominantly Muslim North and Coast counties. Christians are concerned that the Constitutional Review Process has left room for the county governments to introduce Sharia in these regions, despite the fact that this will be contrary to the laws of the rest of Kenya. In the report submitted on September 13, residents accused politicians of working with the militia to further their own selfish agendas. Residents are hoping the government will ban the group like they did another similar group, the Mombasa Republican Congress (MRC). The Mandera County Commissioner admitted knowledge of the militia, and promised to deal with perpetrators of violence. “I am aware of criminals operating from Ethiopia… we will bring them to book,” Commissioner Martin Tialal said. Prayer Points: * Pray for the protection of missionaries and Christians, including several Open Doors partners, living in the three counties where the church has seen increased pressure. * Pray for swift and decisive action from the Kenya government against the plans of this militia group. * Pray for increased economic development in the area, as grinding poverty and hopelessness among the youth are said to be a driving force in the formation of the militia. * Pray for healing and recovery of all affected by the clan clashes. * Pray for the safe return of those who fled to refugee camps in Ethiopia and into the forest. Learn More About Christians Facing Persecution