International Pressure Prompts the Release of Afghani Christian
Said Musa (alternately spelled Sayyed Mussa) was arrested and imprisoned nearly nine months ago on charges of apostasy following a May broadcast on an Afghani TV show called “Sarzanin-e-man,” or “My Homeland,” in which Musa, along with other Christians, were filmed worshipping. As reported in a February 24th article by Compass Direct News, the broadcast sparked protests throughout the country against Christians and a heated debate in parliament.
On May 31, in the wake of the protests against Christians, Musa went to his employer, the International Committee of the Red Cross/Red Crescent, to request personal leave. Authorities arrested him after he left the building, and his family could not locate him for nearly two months. In early June, the deputy secretary of the Afghan Parliament, Abdul Sattar Khawasi, called for the execution of converts from Islam.
Musa wrote a series of letters from prison describing his treatment and the pressure to deny Christ and return to Islam. In the midst of pressure from the international community, he was reported to have been released and left the country February 21st. The circumstances of his release and departure have not yet been made public.
Shoib Assadullah, arrested in October for giving a Bible to a man who reportedly turned him in, remains in prison and is likely that he will receive the death penalty unless diplomatic efforts to obtain his release are successful. In a letter, Assadullah wrote that “freedom is a gift from God.”
We come before You, Father, in thanksgiving for the release of Said Musa. We ask you to continue to protect him and his family and to give him courage to remain faithful. Thank you for the faith of Musa who refused to deny You and return to Islam. We call on You to grant the success of diplomatic efforts to obtain Assadullah release as well. Please Father, soften the hearts of the court system and strengthen the voice of those in engaged in diplomatic negotiations. But whether he is released or executed, we praise You for the true freedom he has in Christ. He is in Your compassionate and mighty hands. Amen
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