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« on: October 03, 2005, 12:37:59 AM »

State threatens to close Christian ministry
Group files lawsuit, claiming 'harassment, pure and simple'
Posted: October 1, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern


� 2005 WorldNetDaily.com

A Christian ministry filed a lawsuit yesterday in federal court against the state of Tennessee for forcing it to obtain a license in order to continue.

Last month, the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities designated the non-profit group Love in Action a "mental health supportive living facility" and informed the ministry it must cease operations by Sept. 30 if it didn't apply for a license or comply with the department's demands.

"This is harassment, pure and simple," said Nate Kellum, senior legal counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund, which represents the group.

"There is no legitimate state interest here," he said. "There's no health or safety violation, and there's no fire code or overcrowding concern."

Kellum argues Love in Action's ministry has nothing to do with mental health as defined by law.

He claims the state is "trying to turn a Christian ministry into a state-regulated mental hospital."

"By the state's reasoning, a homeless shelter would become a medical clinic if a homeless person were taking antibiotics for some minor infection," Kellum said.

"Do we want the state to shut down private organizations that are helping people who are struggling?"

ADF filed the complaint and motion for preliminary injunction (pdf file) in the U.S. District Court for the District of Tennessee, Memphis Division.

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« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2005, 11:40:04 PM »

Evangelicals To Be Expelled from Town in Hidalgo, Mexico

Roman Catholic town council decides to “end the evangelical religion” in San Nicolas.


by Elisabeth Isais

MEXICO CITY, October 4 (Compass) – About 150 evangelicals – 40 families – will be expelled from their homes in San Nicolas, Hidalgo state, at the end of October, according to a town council vote on Saturday, October 1.

Catholic officials in San Nicolas, near Ixmiquilpan, accused the evangelicals of refusing to cooperate in work projects, a charge Protestant leaders denied. The day after the expulsion decision, townspeople blocked access to property belonging to the Independent Christian Pentecostal Church. They forcibly took away tools and materials to be used for constructing a church building.

“The evangelicals have not done work projects and have not contributed anything to the community,” San Nicolas official Pablo Beltrán Ibarra told La Jornada newspaper on Sunday, October 2. The Rev. Pedro Olvera Rivera, national superintendent of the Independent Christian Pentecostal denomination, denied the frequent accusation that evangelicals have failed to participate in town projects.

He said evangelicals are leaders of the committee for community services and have been working hard in that capacity. Other Pentecostals in the town also emphatically denied Beltrán Ibarra’s accusation.

Reporter Carlos Camacho stated in the La Jornada article, “Of the population of 8,000 inhabitants, 70 percent consider themselves Catholics and have decided to end the evangelical religion.” A local Catholic priest has tried to persuade the town to practice religious freedom, once announcing through a loudspeaker, “We are all children of God,” but townspeople cut off the amplification as he spoke, according to the report.

Catholic town leader Noe Gerardo threatened reporters who were present that they would be burned and no longer allowed into San Nicolas if they repeated the priest’s message.

According to Rev. Olvera, Catholic authorities are considering removing the priest from San Nicolas. Meanwhile, government representatives are trying to deal with the problem of the probable expulsion of 150 people from their homes and property by the end of the month.

The Independent Christian Pentecostal Church was established in the town 21 years ago, according to Rev. Olvera. Religious persecution began there about 14 years ago when evangelicals’ water and electricity services were suspended. Five years ago, one believer was killed and the Bethel Temple was destroyed. Since then, the Pentecostals have been meeting in a home, more families have converted, and they had recently acquired the land to erect the church building.

Longtime hostilities erupted anew when Ponciano Rodriguez, an evangelical Christian, died last August 18, and Catholics refused to grant permission to bury him in the San Nicolas cemetery. In 1948 Rodriguez had been the chief instigator of a movement to expel two non-Catholic families from San Nicolas, but later he became a Pentecostal.

Hostilities in Chiapas

In the state of Chiapas, town leaders also have tried to ban evangelicals. Officials in San Antonio Las Rosas have decreed that only Catholics may live in the town.

Last July, three evangelicals were jailed for 24 hours in the town to try to force them to move out, according to Pastor Esdras Alonso Gonzalez, coordinator of religious affairs for San Cristóbal de las Casas. The three non-Catholics had to pay a fine of 1,000 pesos each ($93) to be freed, reported Christian lawyer Abdias Tovilla Jaime.

On September 25, local authorities cut the electricity to evangelical families, causing them to protest to the state and further angering the Catholics, said Pastor Alonso in the October 1 La Jornada.

An inter-religious council led by Tovilla is trying to mediate to avoid the expulsion of evangelicals.

Evangelicals To Be Expelled from Town in Hidalgo, Mexico
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« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2005, 11:42:39 PM »

House Church Pastor and Evangelist Arrested in Henan, China

MIDLAND, Texas, Oct. 4 (Christian Wire Service / China Aid Association) -- Mr. Ma Shulei, a full time house church evangelist, was arrested in Mianchi County, Sanmenxia City, Henan Province, along with his 58-year-old father, Mr. Ma Yinzhou, who is a house church pastor.

September 26, 2005, Mr. Ma Shulei returned home from Yunnan Province to visit his father. Someone immediately reported this information to the police. When the police arrived, Mr. Ma Shulei was not at home. Therefore, the police arrested his father Pastor Ma Yinzhou, and forced him to reveal his son's whereabouts. To save his father, Mr. Ma Shulei turned himself in October 2. However, his father was not released and both are now in police custody.

In 2002, Mr. Ma Shulei and his father were detained in Beijing for more than 40 days after a church leader's meeting was raided by the police. Later they were put on probation and ordered to report to the police every five days. Instead of following the probation order, Mr. Ma Shulei went into Yunnan Province as a house church missionary. Mr. Ma Shulei graduated from a Chinese seminary in Myanmar in 2002.

"To hold the father in order to arrest the son is certainly a very harsh tactic to use against two innocent individuals." said Bob Fu, "We urge the Chinese government to immediately release Pastor Ma and his son."

House Church Pastor and Evangelist Arrested in Henan, China
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« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2005, 11:44:57 PM »

Major Islamic Crackdown on Churches in Indonesia Reported; Churches Closed, Pastors Threatened

Wednesday, October 5, 2005
By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent BosNewsLife

BANDUNG, INDONESIA (BosNewsLife)-- A Christian human rights group urged Indonesia's government Tuesday, October 4, to immediately halt the activities of known Islamic militants who it claims have closed dozens of churches, threaten pastors and other believers, and promote the abduction of Westerners "in cooperation" with local authorities.

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« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2005, 01:16:42 PM »

200 Christians detained in mass sweep
Follows U.S. sanctions for religious freedom violations
Posted: October 11, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern

© 2005 WorldNetDaily.com

The North African country Eritrea has detained more than 200 Christians in an operation said to be the worst of its kind.

Eritrean security forces captured evangelicals and members of minority churches from the streets, their workplaces and homes Oct. 3, reported the British group Release Eritrea.

The whereabouts of the Christians is unknown.

Authorities also shut down a church's development project and detained its entire staff. The project includes an extensive emergency aid and feeding program.

Among the detainees are the general secretary of the project, identified only as Mr. Ukbay, and his administrator, Ghebre Michael.

Release Eritrea said that in addition to the safety of the detainees, they are concerned about the well-being of the families left behind.

Our source said, "Please remember that in many homes children and women are suffering and have also becomes victims of persecution. There will be no salary coming into many homes and their lives are in danger. Please pray for us."

Eritrea, which gained independence from Ethiopia in 1993 after a 30-year war, has been designated by the U.S. as a "country of particular concern" for severe and ongoing violations of religious freedom.

As a result, the State Department notified Congress two weeks ago that the secretary of state banned commercial export of certain defense articles to Eritrea.

In 2002, the PFDJ, Eritrea's ruling party, ordered the closure of all churches not belonging to the Orthodox, Roman Catholic or Evangelical Lutheran denominations.

At least 36 churches have been closed, and many members and their leaders have been imprisoned, harassed and tortured, Release Eritrea said.

The government has issued several blanket denials, insisting "no groups or persons are persecuted in Eritrea for their beliefs or religion" and that people were "free to worship according to their wish."

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« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2005, 02:10:23 PM »

50 house church leaders arrested, some beaten
Communist authorities raid meeting of pastors from 20 provinces
Posted: October 21, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern

© 2005 WorldNetDaily.com

Chinese communist authorities arrested 50 house church leaders from more than 20 provinces at a retreat in Hebei Province.

Some were beaten during the Oct. 20 raid, reported China Aid Association.

According to an eyewitness report, the leaders, from independent house churches outside government control, planned to discuss how to help the poor, orphaned and the floating population in urban areas.

Public Security Bureau of the city of Baoding and government religious affairs officials made the arrrests.

One of the church leaders, Dai Hong, was beaten by an officer named Tang, China Aid said.

Among the arrested is a famous evangelist, pastor Zhang Mingxuan, who, along with two other Christians once ran a nursing home in Beijing.

He previously was detained prior to President Bush's trip to China in February 2002.

"It is no coincident that this kind of incident should happen again before President Bush's upcoming visit to China next month." says Bob Fu, the President of China Aid Association.

"The Chinese government is systematically targeting the house church movement in China," Fu added. "We urge the international community and President Bush to pressure the Chinese government to protect freedom of religion and other human rights."

President Bush is expected to visit Beijing Nov. 19.

The vast majority of Christians in China, perhaps as many as 100 million, are part of the unregistered church. The communist government requires all Protestant church activity to be under control of the official Three-Self Patriotic Movement, which restricts activities such as evangelism and certain teachings. Catholics, forbidden contact with the Vatican, are required to submit to a similar organization.

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« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2005, 01:38:29 PM »

Thursday, October 20, 2005

INDONESIAN CHRISTIANS ATTACKED AS THEY WORSHIP IN THE STREET

By Michael Ireland Chief Correspondent,
ASSIST News Service

INDONESIA (ANS) -- A group of Christians worshipping on the street was attacked on Sunday, October 16 as they met in Jatimulya, East Bekasi, West Java.

Barnabas Fund reports that outdoor worship was the only option for these Christians as their church building had been recently forced to close, part of an ongoing pattern of forcible church closures in West Java.

An e-mail report from the organization says: "The Christians came from three churches who had been ordered by the Mayor of Jatimulya to close their church buildings five weeks ago, the closures then enforced by a radical Muslim group called the Alliance Against Apostasy. The constitution of Indonesia guarantees freedom of religion, but with their buildings closed and forbidden to meet for worship in private homes, the Christians have had to gather in the streets each Sunday, in order to worship together."

Barnabas Fund says: "When they met for their service on Sunday, October 9 they were warned to stop but when some 50 lawyers arrived from Jakarta the service proceeded, although it was shorter than normal. Then on Sunday, October 16 the Christians found that in the street where they had been worshipping for the past weeks some 300 radical Muslims had laid out their prayer mats and were conducting their own Islamic worship service. Undeterred the Christians moved to another street and began their service there."

The determination of the Christians to continue to worship apparently angered the Islamic radicals, Barnabas Fund says.

"They approached the gathered Christians and began to mock them and insult them, calling on them to disband their meeting. A female church leader was pushed and shoved until she fell into a drain. The police who were on duty stood by and watched the mob, while a few even joined in the attack."

While no one was seriously hurt, and the Christians remain committed to meeting together, there is fear that there will be more violence and greater danger as they do so, Barnabas Fund says.

Incidents of forced church closures in West Java are increasing. According to some reports there may be as many as 30 a month.

In the Indonesian capital Jakarta 18 churches have had police collecting data on their services, and are now expecting to be closed in the near future. The mayor of Sukabumi has called for all churches without permits in his town to be closed. The pattern of church closures appears to be moving into East Java, where 24 churches in the city of Malang are under threat of closure. The Indonesian Government has made public statements that they do not agree with church closures, yet government officials continue to issue decrees to close them.

Worse news comes from Poso, Sulawesi, where the number of suspected Islamic radicals has increased and there have been three assassinations in the past two weeks. On the weekend of October 15-16 churches in Poso and Palu were placed under police guard.

INDONESIAN CHRISTIANS ATTACKED AS THEY WORSHIP IN THE STREET

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« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2005, 11:37:03 AM »

Three Christian schoolgirls beheaded in Indonesia

Sat Oct 29, 8:22 AM ET

JAKARTA (AFP) - Three Christian teenage girls were beheaded in an assault that marks an escalation of the violence against non-Muslims in Indonesia's Central Sulawesi province.

The three high school students were found with their heads severed early Saturday in the sectarian-divided town of Poso, said provincial police spokesman Rais Adam.

The girls were believed to have been murdered while they walked to school, Adam said Saturday.

He said two of the victims' heads were found near a police post while the third was discovered outside a Christian church in Poso.

Muslim extremists have been linked to bombings, shootings and other attacks targeting Christians in the Poso area over the last two years but these appear to be the first recent beheadings.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono strongly condemned the beheadings, a tactic used periodically by insurgents in Muslim southern Thailand.

"I condemn this inhumane murder, whoever the perpetrators are and whatever their motives," the president was quoted as saying by Detikcom online news service.

Another teenage student girl was wounded in the attack, said national police spokesman Ariyanto Budiarjo.

But the girl, who was hacked in her upper chest, told police the killings were carried out by six men clad in black and wearing face masks.

Police earlier detained eight men after they refused to have their car searched at a checkpoint, said Budiarjo, but he would not say whether those men were connected to the killings.

Poso has seen several home-made bomb explosions in the past month which caused minimal damage and no casualties.

In May a pair of bomb attacks killed 22 people at a market in the neighbouring coastal town of Tentena.

Police said the Tentena bombings were the work of Islamic militants with possible links to Jemaah Islamiyah, which authorities say has some ties to Al-Qaeda. Others say the attack was politically motivated.

Authorities have linked JI to numerous deadly bombings elsewhere in Indonesia.

Last December a Christian priest was critically injured when unidentified attackers slashed him with machetes in Poso ahead of Christmas services, police said. On the same day south of the provincial capital Palu, to the west of Poso, two Christians died in a machete attack.

Among other violence last year was the assassination of a Christian prosecutor who handled terrorism cases in Palu.

In July last year gunmen sprayed bullets into a Palu church, killing a woman priest and injuring four other people.

In the worst bloodshed of 2003, armed gangs in October killed 10 people in attacks on mainly Christian villages.

A report last year by the International Crisis Group think-tank blamed many of the Christian deaths in Poso on Mujahidin KOMPAK, an outfit with loose affiliations to the Jemaah Islamiyah.

Budiarjo said security at checkpoints in and around Poso was tightened after the beheadings.

"We hope that the public will not be provoked by this incident because this is clearly an act of provocation," the police spokesman said.

Yudhoyono dispatched national police chief Sutanto and armed forces chief Endriartono Sutarto to Poso to "control the situation and hold dialogues" with local community leaders.

"Find and arrest the perpetrators and charged them with the existing law," Yudhoyono was quoted as saying.

Adam told AFP police were still trying to determine whether the case was religiously motivated.

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« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2005, 10:58:27 PM »

Three Christians Jailed for Printing Bibles in China

Pastor Cai Zhuohua, his wife and brother-in-law are sentenced.

by Sarah Page

DUBLIN, November 15 (Compass) � Beijing authorities on November 4 ordered a Chinese legal firm to suspend activities for a year, hours after top lawyer Gao Zhisheng filed court documents in defense of Pastor Cai Zhuohua.

Four days later, Cai and three family members were convicted of �illegal business practices.�

State security officers arrested Cai on September 11, 2004, following a raid on a church warehouse containing over 237,000 privately printed copies of the Bible and other Christian literature.

His wife, Xiao Yunfei, was arrested on October 4, 2004, while her brother, Xiao Gaowen, and sister-in-law, Hu Jinyun, were arrested on September 27 of that year, according to a China Aid Association (CAA) report.

A government permit is required for all Chinese publications. The new Regulations on Religious Affairs � brought into effect on March 1, 2005 � strengthened the ban on illegal religious publications and increased the penalty for printing or distributing religious books without prior government approval.

Cai, who led six Beijing house churches, claimed the books were printed for free distribution within house church networks, but authorities accused Cai and other church members of running the warehouse as a profit-making venture.

The four were held for 10 months before the case finally went to trial on July 7. Defense lawyers acknowledged that the literature was printed without permission but argued that the defendants could not be charged with �economic crimes� since the Bibles were not intended for sale.

Judge You Tao found three of the defendants guilty as charged. Cai, 34, was sentenced to three years, his wife Xiao Yunfei, 33, to 2 years and her 37-year-old brother to 18 months. The judge, however, announced that Hu Jinyun, charged with �storing illegal goods,� had escaped punishment by providing evidence against her sister-in-law, Reuters reported.

Cai�s mother, Cai Laiyi � now caring for Cai�s 5-year-old son � told Reuters that the prosecution had not found a single witness to testify that Cai had earned money from the sale of the books.

Reuters also quoted Ye Xiaowen, director of the State Administration of Religious Affairs (SARA), who told a Beijing-funded Hong Kong newspaper that Cai had illegally printed 40 million copies of the Bible and other Christian books, and then sold 2 million of these for profit.

No evidence has been found to support this statement.

Ye also insisted that the case had nothing to do with religious persecution, but in the same interview he said that religion was a �point of penetration through which Western anti-China forces seek to Westernize and disintegrate China.�

Following their conviction, Cai, Xiao Yunfei and Xiao Gaowen had just 10 days to file an appeal, a difficult endeavor in light of the order that their law firm suspend all activities.

Gao, one of eight lawyers who volunteered to defend Cai free of charge, said he would challenge the suspension order.

The order followed several visits this year from officials encouraging Gao to drop �politically sensitive� cases, The Washington Post reported on November 6.

The verdict came just two weeks before U.S. President George W. Bush�s scheduled visit to China on November 19-21. Bush told reporters at a press briefing on November 9 that he would raise religious freedom issues with President Hu Jintao and other government officials during his stay.

Meanwhile, the U.S. State Department on November 8 included China on its list of �Countries of Particular Concern,� the nations designated as top violators of religious freedom.

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« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2005, 11:39:34 PM »

3 Christians face execution
Claim they were falsely convicted during Muslim clash
Posted: December 15, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern

© 2005 WorldNetDaily.com


Fabianus Tibo
Three Christian men in Indonesia who claim they were falsely accused of murder during attacks by radical Muslims face execution after being denied clemency by the Asian nation's president.

Fabianus Tibo, Dominggus Dasilva and Marinus Riwu were sentenced to death during the conflict in Poso, Central Sulewesi, in 2000.

With denial of clemency by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, their execution by firing squad could take place as early as the end of this month, according to the British-based Christian charity Jubilee Campaign.

The three men claim their convictions resulted from irregularities during their trial. They contend, for example, the judge in the case neglected to consider the testimony of 13 different witnesses – including the defendants themselves – that would have exonerated them.

A number of other witnesses – including Irwanto Hasan, who at the time was a member of the Poso Police Intelligence Division – say the men were part of a humanitarian team when they were arrested.

They came to Poso in 2000 after hearing reports a Catholic Church there had been burned, Jubilee Campaign said.

The men entered the conflict zone to evacuate children from a church-run school in the village of Moengko, Poso City. On the morning of May 23, 2000, a Muslim mob entered the village and set fire to the church. The defendants and the students escaped out the back door before the building burned to the ground.

A few days later, according to Hasan, Tibo and the others were recruited by the Red Group, described as a "militant Christian group." Hasan claimed the men acted to subvert the Red Group's leaders and protect various individuals – both Christian and Muslim – from violence.

Hasan claimed that at one point Tibo saved his life.

A number of Indonesian human rights groups are supporting the three men, seeking clemency and exoneration.

At the request of Jubilee Campaign Indonesia, several members of the U.S. Congress have written to President Susilo, urging him to reconsider his denial of clemency. Jubilee Campaign's U.S. branch is developing a case to take before the United Nations.

As WorldNetDaily reported in 2001, more than 2,000 people died in three years of clashes in Central Sulawesi province before a peace agreement was reached between Muslim and Christian leaders.

An Islamic terrorist group called Laskar Jihad threatened to eliminate Christians from the region but was held off by government troops.

Since the agreement, however, sporadic attacks – mostly against Christians – have continued, according to Christian Solidarity Worldwide.
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« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2005, 11:14:38 PM »

Christians under siege globally, Land, others say
Dec 15, 2005
By Tom Strode
Baptist Press

WASHINGTON (BP)--American Christians may live with concerns about whether �Merry Christmas� greetings are welcome at their local retailers or in the public square, but followers of Christ in numerous countries live with the knowledge that expressing their faith may result in torture, imprisonment or death.

The persecution of Christians overseas continues and, in some countries, is increasing, specialists on international religious liberty said at a Dec. 14 briefing at the U.S. Capitol.

Charles Chaput, the Roman Catholic archbishop of Denver, said three things distinguish persecution of and discrimination against Christians globally.

�First of all, it�s ugly,� said Chaput, a member of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). �Secondly, it�s growing. And third, the mass media ... seem to generally ignore or downplay its gravity.�

Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and also a USCIRF member, told the audience of congressional staffers, activists and reporters, �We come here at Christmastime, and we can celebrate our religious freedom. [W]e�re hear to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves because they live in countries where they are not free to worship....�

In a briefing titled �Christmas Under Siege Around the World,� Land, Chaput and five other experts on the issue described the conditions for Christians in countries such as North Korea, China, Indonesia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and India.

Though North Korea is the �world�s most closed society,� a recently released USCIRF report based on interviews with refugees and escapees gives some indication of the ongoing repression of believers in that Asian country in which the late dictator, Kim Il Sung, is the object of a �quasi-religious cult of personality,� Land said.

The findings in interviews of the North Koreans included, Land said: 1) �[T]here is no freedom of thought, conscience or belief in North Korea�; 2) North Koreans are required to attend indoctrination sessions at least weekly at Kim Il Sung Revolutionary Research Centers; 3) none knew of �any authorized religious activity;� 4) some reported on executions of people who participated in religious activities or possessed a Bible or other religious material.

Summarizing a November report based on a trip to China by Land and six other USCIRF members, the ERLC president said the �scope of political openness and individual freedom is narrowing� in the world�s most populous country.

Chinese parents �are not free to raise their children in their faith,� Land said. �That is not religious freedom. I wouldn�t even dignify it by [calling it] toleration. I would say it is persecution. And it�s getting worse, not better, and it�s up to us and the rest of the world to call for� religious freedom, he said.

Indonesia �has the largest Muslim population of any nation in the world, and violence against the Christian minority has steadily continued over the past decade,� Chaput said. The October beheadings of three teenage Christian girls �were part of a brutal, ongoing war by Islamic militants,� he said.

�Anti-Christian violence in Indonesia poses a threat not just to regional peace but also to mutual understanding between Christians and Muslims worldwide,� Chaput said. �And that is something neither community of faith can afford.�

New Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad desires to increase the oppression of the country�s 20,000-plus Christians, said Keith Roderick of Christian Solidarity International.

In a November meeting with 30 provincial governors, Ahmadinejad said the government �should eradicate the growing house church movement across Iran,� Roderick said at the briefing. �Reportedly, he said, �I will stop Christianity in this country.��

Lawrence Uzzell, president of the International Religious Freedom Watch, said it is scandalous that the State Department under the Bush administration has not declared Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan as �countries of particular concern,� a classification reserved for the most severe violators of religious freedom. The USCIRF has recommended both countries be designated as CPCs.

Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan are �by far the most oppressive of the former Soviet republics,� Uzzell said.

He expressed concern that the Pentagon, in its execution of a war on terrorism, is winning the debate with the USCIRF and human rights groups regarding the Central Asian regimes. U.S. officials are overlooking human rights violations by dictators in both governments to gain their support against terrorism, he said.

�We may win the war on terrorism but lose our souls,� Uzzell said. �If we continue our current ham-fisted policies in Central Asia, we may lose both.�

The countries practicing religious persecution can be divided into three categories, said Paul Marshall, senior fellow at Freedom House�s Center for Religious Freedom: 1) Remaining and former communist countries, including China, North Korea, Vietnam, Cuba and Belarus; 2) countries in which religious nationalism is practiced, such as Sri Lanka, Nepal and Burma, and 3) countries dominated by Islam, including Indonesia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Unlike the others, the countries controlled by radical Islam are �expansionist,� Marshall said.

Christians under siege globally, Land, others say
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« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2005, 12:51:37 AM »

Two Women Sentenced For Praying In Public

(TV5) --  It's a story causing ripples through the Christian community in Detroit. Two women were sentenced December 15th on disorderly conduct charges for dropping down on their knees and praying in public.

Twenty-Five year-old Brittany Jordan and 27-year-old Rachael Jacob will serve a year's probation.

Police arrested the women twice for dropping to the ground in a public place to pray. The women say they did it because God was talking to them.

It happened at the entrance of a store, in the middle of a gas station and during a previous court hearing. The judge says the behavior doesn't respect the rights of others.

"I'm not trying to limit your ability to pray. I just want you to pray in a place where it doesn't impede the rights of others where they have a lawful right to be,” said Michigan Magistrate Michael Osaer.

The defendants say they were trying to show the importance of prayer. In addition to the probation, both women must pay a 400 dollar fine.
Two Women sentenced for Praying
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« Reply #12 on: December 21, 2005, 01:08:54 AM »

University rejects Christian student group
Association can't exclude homosexuals, non-believers as members
Posted: December 20, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern


© 2005 WorldNetDaily.com

A state university in California refuses to recognize a Christian student organization because it requires members to live according to the group's religious faith.

The Christian Student Association at California State University at San Bernardino submitted a constitution pledging it will not discriminate on the basis of "race, color, national origin, gender, or physical disability" but reserve the right to restrict membership based on religious beliefs and sexual orientation, according to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, or FIRE.

In October, however, a university administrator said although the group "would not be required to admit members who did not support the purpose of the organization," it could not exclude students "because of their status as a non-Christian or as a homosexual."

The student group then contacted FIRE for help.

"Time after time, college administrators have robbed students of their fundamental freedoms of association and religion, so CSA's situation sadly comes as no surprise," said FIRE Director of Legal and Public Advocacy Greg Lukianoff.

Lukianoff asserts the university, like so many others, "is misusing nondiscrimination policies to tell Christian students that they cannot associate based upon the dictates of their faith."

FIRE says it has defeated similar treatment of Christian and Muslim student groups at Tufts University, Rutgers University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Purdue University, The Ohio State University, Louisiana State University, Milwaukee School of Engineering and other institutions.

"CSA is not discriminating based on students' status but trying to express its religious faith and adhere to its beliefs regarding sexual morality," said Lukianoff.

FIRE argues student groups at public universities have a right to ensure that their members "share their central beliefs."

The California State University system's policy denying student religious organizations the right to govern themselves according to their own religious principles is under challenge in a lawsuit filed by the Arizona-based Alliance Defense Fund.

Nevertheless, California State University at San Bernardino stands by its policies, refusing official recognition to the Christian group, FIRE says.

But Lukianoff argues the Constitution ensures "Muslim groups are free to be Muslim, Buddhist groups are free to be Buddhist, and Christian groups are free to be Christian, even if the principles they express run counter to the official viewpoints or unconstitutional policies of state universities."

University rejects Christian student group
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« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2005, 06:50:02 AM »

 Islamic terrorists shot aid couple as they watched TV
By Auslan Cramb
(Filed: 23/12/2005)

A husband and wife who dedicated their lives to helping African children were murdered in cold blood by Islamic terrorists, an inquest heard yesterday.

Dick and Enid Eyeington were watching television at their home in Somaliland when a terrorist linked to al-Qaeda shot them.

The couple were considered "infidels" by their attackers, who wrongly believed that they were trying to convert Africans to Christianity.

Four men were involved in the attack in which a gunman wielding an AK47 put the weapon through the living room window and opened fire on Oct 20, 2003.

Mr Eyeington, 62, was shot four times. He was still holding the television remote control when he was found, Westminster coroner's court heard. Mrs Eyeington, 60, died from a single shot to the head.

The aid workers, originally from Co Durham, where they were childhood sweethearts, had lived in Africa since marrying in 1963 and worked with poor children in Tanzania, Swaziland and Somaliland.

Mr Eyeington became headmaster of Waterford School and his wife worked with people suffering from HIV. Despite their families' worries, they took up an offer three years ago to set up a new school for the charity SOS Village in the village of Sheikh, in Somaliland, a country in which violence is widespread.

Their daughter Louise, 37, a solicitor from London, told the hearing that her father, a Sunderland supporter, had run football clubs in Africa and her mother had set up outreach health centres. "Dick and Enid dedicated most of their lives to the education of underprivileged African children," she said. "They had great courage, commitment and honesty and the world is a poorer place without them."

The authorities in Somaliland asked the Metropolitan Police for help and officers flew from Britain to collect evidence and to help in the investigation.

There was a breakthrough in March last year when a German aid worker and his Kenyan girlfriend were attacked. A man was arrested and he confessed to killing the Eyeingtons.

Det Chief Insp Jill Bailey told the hearing that last month four men, including Mohammed Ali Essa, who fired the AK47, had been convicted of murder and sentenced to death by firing squad. The terrorists shouted "Allah Akbar" (God is Great) after being sentenced and are still awaiting execution.

Miss Bailey said the men were part of a terrorist cell called El Itihad which had killed an Italian nun a week earlier. She also said that Essa's brother-in-law, Adan Ayro, who owned the house in which Essa was captured, could have had links to al-Qa'eda. A plan to blow up an Ethiopian airliner and bomb-making manuals were uncovered during the investigations.

"The defendants did not recognise their actions as crimes," Miss Bailey said. "They felt justified in murdering infidels who they believed were offending Muslim fundamentalism."

Recording a verdict of unlawful killing, the coroner, Dr Paul Knapman, said: "This is a terrible tragedy in which two people who had dedicated their lives to improving the lives of underprivileged African children were murdered in cold blood and appear to be victims of terrorism abroad."

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Joh 9:4  I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.
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« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2006, 10:41:49 AM »

Airline bans Bibles to avoid offending Muslims
Carrier to Saudi Arabia also precluding crucifixes, teddy bears
Posted: January 9, 2006
11:20 p.m. Eastern


© 2006 WorldNetDaily.com

A British airline banned its staff from taking Bibles and wearing crucifixes or St. Christopher medals on flights to Saudi Arabia to avoid offend the country's Muslims.

British Midland International also has told female flight attendants they must walk two paces behind male colleagues and cover themselves from head to foot in a headscarf and robe known as an abaya, the Mirror newspaper of London reported.

Teddy bears or other cuddly toys also are not allowed.

Airline officials, who have sparked outrage, the paper says, explain the Islamic kingdom's strict laws – enforced by religious police – prohibit public practice of Christianity and figures of animals.

BMI spokesman Phil Shepherd said: "In providing air services people want, demand and use, we have an obligation to respect the customs of the destination country."

An airline employee who asked not to be named told the Mirror: "It's outrageous that we must respect their beliefs but they're not prepared to respect ours."

The employee said his grandmother gave him a crucifix shortly before she died that he wears at all times.

"It's got massive sentimental value and I don't see why I have to remove it," he said.

The airline's staff handbook says: "Prior to disembarking the aircraft all female crew will be required to put on their company issued abaya. It will be issued with the headscarf which must be worn."

The employees' union wants staff members to be able to opt out of the flights, but the airline says the only option is to transfer from overseas staff to domestic flights, which could mean a loss of about $30,000 a year in wages.

About 40 staff members have filed complaints since the route began in September.

Some of the male members who are homosexual have called in sick, because they are afraid of traveling to Saudi Arabia, where homosexual activity is punishable by flogging, jail or death.

Airline bans Bibles to avoid offending Muslims

My note; Frankly, I would tell them to stick it in their ear. Course I won't be traveling, to these stick in the mud countries. Grin
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