The persecution of Christians in Sudan is systematic and more reminiscent of a policy of ethnic cleansing. Historically, Islam is deeply embedded in Sudan’s society. Sudan is one of the few African countries that has consistently been on the World Watch List since its first use in 1993 for internal research purposes. The country’s rank on the list has been oscillating mostly between the top 10 and the top 20 countries. Sudan has been designated a “Country of Particular Concern” by the US State Department since 1999. Furthermore, for the past decades there has been no rule of law in Sudan; press and media laws have been restrictive, and freedom of expression and religion has been highly curtailed. The ethnic-cultural landscape is very diverse and complicated: Arab versus Black, Muslim versus Christian. The secession of South Sudan did not solve these problems. This is particularly true for black Africans, as a significant number are Christian and still living in the country. The government of Sudan is strictly implementing the policy of one religion, one culture and one language.
The trial of two Sudanese pastors and their two friends has reconvened after the translation of relevant documents to consider the charges against them, two of which carry a maximum sentence of death.
In light of South Sudan’s current crisis, the World Council of Churches organized a discussion in Geneva that considered, among other things, the role of the church and women in the peace process.