Campaign Of Islamic Persecution In EthiopiaEven in a country in which Muslims are a minority, many of them are having the nerve to severely persecute adherents of the country's majority faith.
Ethiopian Christians face tough ultimatum
Charlie Butts - 1/29/2011
More Christians in Ethiopia are facing persecution from Muslims. According to Jonathan Racho of International Christian Concern (ICC), the incidents follow a familiar pattern. "Christians in the Ethiopian city of Besheno...are being harassed and physically abused after Muslims posted notices on the doors of Christian homes, warning them to convert to Islam, leave the city, or face death," the ICC spokesman reports.
He says Christians continue to suffer repeated attacks in the town, "and that has forced three Christian leaders to flee out of the city because of the Islamic pressure. Also, two Christians have been forced to convert to Islam. We are really disappointed that the Ethiopian authorities are not paying attention to the plight of the Christians in the city," Racho laments. He explains that if a Christian dies in Besheno, he or she must be transported 20 miles to a city that will permit their burial. But local officials are Muslim and do not care about the plight of Christians, so Racho is encouraging the worldwide Body of Christ to speak up on behalf of the persecuted.
Injustice in Ethiopia
Becky Yeh - 2/8/2011
Muslims in Ethiopia are forcing a difficult ultimatum upon the country's Christians: convert, leave the city, or die. Besheno Muslims, who comprise nearly 94 percent of the population, have made their message known to believers, as they have placed notices on doors and physically attacked several believers in the southern Ethiopian rural city, where there are only about 30 Christians.
Jonathan Racho of International Christian Concern (ICC) explains that Ethiopia is mainly Christian, but some pockets of the country, including Besheno, are dominated by Muslims. "It's a paradox for Christians who live in a Christian-majority country and worship underground," he laments. He notes that an evangelist and several Christians suffered an extremist attack last year that left them seriously wounded. So Ethiopian Christians are fighting for an end to the injustice.
"All the Christians are asking for is the right to practice their freedom of religion as provided under the Constitution of Ethiopia," Racho explains. "The Ethiopian Constitution makes it clear that everyone, every citizen has a freedom of religion." So Racho is urging Americans to contact their representatives and the U.S. embassy of Ethiopia to request that leaders apply pressure on the Ethiopian government to respond to the injustice.
Muslim mob assaults Christian students in Ethiopia
Charlie Butts - 3/6/2011
Christian students recently suffered an attack by a Muslim mob in Ethiopia. The students were on a mission trip to a Muslim village when they were attacked. Jonathon Racho of International Christian Concern tells OneNewsNow they were handing out Bibles and witnessing to villagers. "Then one of the villagers angrily argued with the Christians,” Racho explains, “and then he incited the Muslim mob to attack the Christians. Then the attackers shouted 'Allah Akbar,' which means 'God is great,' as they hurled stones at the Christians and beat them with rods."
Seventeen people were injured. Racho explains that Ethiopia is a predominantly Christian country with about a third of the population Muslim, but with pockets where Muslims are in the majority. "The constitution of Ethiopia guarantees freedom of religion and freedom of ex
International Christian Concern is calling on the Ethiopian government to enforce the law, and the American public to contact the Ethiopian Embassy in Washington with the same request.
Islamic extremists up persecution of Christians in Ethiopia
Becky Yeh - 3/14/2011
Christians in the Jima province in western Ethiopia are seeing their region ravaged by Islamic extremists who have killed one Christian, burned down dozens of churches, a Bible school and an orphanage, and destroyed 50 homes belonging to believers. International Christian Concern reports that the attacks began March 2 after Islamic extremists blamed believers for desecrating the Quran -- an action that Jonathan Racho, regional manager for Africa with ICC, says was actually done by Muslims.
"They are using force in order to ascertain their presence in the country,” Racho said. “The Islamists in Ethiopia believe that they should not be ruled by the government which is dominated by people from a Christian background. The radical Muslims are saying they can only live in a country where sharia law is implemented, and that's why they are organizing this kind of violence in order to destabilize the country."
The attacks, which have spread to neighboring villages, have claimed 55 Christian churches and have left 3,000 people homeless. The Ethiopian government has deployed the military to prevent further attacks. In 2006, Muslims attacked Christians in the region, killing dozens and razing churches in the process.
Response in Ethiopia 'too little, too late'
Charlie Butts - 3/17/201
The government of Ethiopia is taking action after violent attacks by Muslims against Christians. The violence is believed to have been launched by an extremist Muslim group which falsely accused Christians of desecrating the Quran. The attacks spread to several villages, leaving scores of people dead and thousands homeless. Jonathan Racho of International Christian Concern (ICC) summarizes what happened. "The incidents started on March 2," he tells OneNewsNow. "They actually attacked several Christians and destroyed churches and one Bible school, one orphanage, and one church office."
During one week with no action by authorities, a total of 69 churches -- as well as the homes of 30 church leaders -- were torched. Racho reports the government of the mostly Christian nation has now dispatched troops to stop the violence. "But I would say it is too little, too late, because the damage has already been done," he laments. Racho contends justice needs to prevail to send a message that similar incidents will not be tolerated. "The Ethiopian government has arrested around 130 of the perpetrators, and we hope they will be prosecuted according to the law," he says.
ICC is raising funds as it partners with local churches to provide critical needs such as food and clothing.
Conceptualclarity : Please pray for the Christians in Muslim-majority areas of Ethiopia.