Understanding the situation for Christians in Tanzania requires an insight into various sociological, historical and political events in the country. The Island of Zanzibar has had a very long connection with Islam and other Muslim countries, and it was ruled by a sultanate until the British occupation from 1890 to 1963. Tanzania then became a socialist country from 1961 to 1987. The militant movements in Somalia and Kenya are presently having a serious impact on the country. For example, Tanzanian security forces arrested 10 suspected al-Shabaab militants and discovered bomb-making materials during the raid of a mosque in April 2015. It should also be noted that the population of the Zanzibar Archipelago is mainly Muslim, and many in the region think they are being purposely and systematically deprived of development opportunities by Tanzania’s central government. The inclusion of the Sharia court provision in the constitution would only worsen the situation, the debate over which has already divided the nation.
“I had spoken with my husband when he was at the church but was shocked when a friend phoned to tell me he had been killed!"