Open Doors USA: Newsflashes from the Persecuted Church
(Published every Tuesday & Thursday)
June 17, 2014
Kenya: Violent Attack on Christian Majority Town
On Sunday, gunmen attacked the Christian majority town of Mpekitoni in Lamu county. After hijacking vechiles from the nearby town, they raided the Mpekitoni police station before attacking the town.
Witnesses told media they could hear gunfire and had seen multiple bodies in the street. The attack sent locals fleeing into the forest.
Local Open Doors staff says that two vans full of militia attacked the main police station, disabled communication, took guns, overran the police and then moved on into the town shooting and killing all they found walking around.
“They torched building including banks, hotels and gas stations,” shares an Open Doors staff member. “They then went to nearby homes, and pulled out men and killed them. They left the women and children unharmed, but burnt down their houses.”
The attack began at 8:30 and lasted about five hours. Open Doors contacts in Mpekitoni spent the night in the Bush, but were in touch with local staff throughout the night. Almost all Christians fled into the surrounding forests and spent the night there with their families. Pastors now have to see if all their members are accounted for. The Open Doors contacts say many are traumatized.
The Mpeketoni population is about 90% Christian, surrounded by various Somali ethnic (Muslim) communities such as the Orma and Borana.
Iraq: Violence Against Christians Continues
Last week, over 500,000 people fled Mosul due to its seizure by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), an Iraq and Syria-based Sunni Muslim extremist group. The few remaining Christians continue to face increasing attacks in Mosul.
Mosul is the second largest city in Iraq and former home to a significant number of Assyrian Christians. Many of the Christians are fleeing Mosul to Kurdistan, an autonomous northern part of Iraq and considered a safer place.
“The Islamist terrorists want to make Iraq a ‘Muslim only’ nation and as a result they want all Christians out,” says Open Doors USA President/CEO Dr. David Curry. “The ongoing attacks are forcing hundreds of Christians to leave the country.”
In the past 10 years, Iraqi Christians have faced kidnappings, threats and even death for their faith. Thus far, the government has not been able to provide security for these Christians.
An Open Doors representative for Iraq says that some of the Christians have found temporary shelter, but is worried that there will soon be no Christians left in Iraq due to the violence.
“In 2003 the Christian population in Iraq was estimated at over 1 million,” the Open Doors represenative states. “Today, Open Doors places the number now at around 330,000.”
Iraq is ranked No. 4 of 50 countries on the Open Doors 2014 World Watch List of the worst persecutors of Christians.
The Open Doors ministry in Iraq includes trauma support, biblical training for church leaders and Muslim Background Believers, distribution of Bibles and Christian literature, community development projects and working with Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Kurdistan.
Indonesian Catholic and Protestant Groups Attacked by Islamists– World Watch Monitor https://www.worldwatchmonitor.org/2014/06/article_3181163.html/
Two church group
During the first incident on May 29, over a dozen armed people in white robes attacked members of Santo Francis Agung
As he tried talking to the mob, eight people started to beat him, severely injuring him in the head and back. A few other members were assaulted, including an eight-year-old girl who was given an electric shock.
Various assumptions were made about the main motives for the attack. Some were associated with the upcoming Presidential election in July; Julius is apparently an active campaigner of one of the two presidential candidates, the popular Joko “Jokowi” Widodo. In contrast, Yogyakarta Police spokeswoman Adj. Sr. Comr. Anny Pujiastuti
Only three days after this attack, another incident took place; this time against the Pentecostal Church in Indonesia GPDI El Shaddai in Pangukan village, Sleman Regency.
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