Religious freedom ‘essential goal’ in normalising relations with Sudan – US commission

While church properties were returned to the SCOC, other church bodies like SPEC are also in conflict with the government over the ownership of their properties in Bahri (Khartoum North) and Omdurman. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
A new report highlights the lack of religious freedom in Sudan and says improvements in this area remain “an essential goal” for the US before relations between the two countries can be fully normalised. A delegation from the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), an independent, bipartisan advisory body, . . . Read More

US installs Sam Brownback as religious freedom ambassador

Sam Brownback was confirmed as Ambassador-at-large for International Religious Freedom in January.
The US Senate has confirmed Sam Brownback as the new head of the Office of International Religious Freedom. Brownback is the first ambassador under the US’s revised International Religious Freedom Act, which affirms a commitment to international religious freedom as a foreign relations policy. Brownback, 60, ran for president in . . . Read More

US to lift Sudan sanctions despite human rights concerns

Teenage girls carry water in a refugee camp for people from the Nuba Mountains in Sudan. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
The US has announced it will lift economic sanctions on Sudan “in recognition of [its] positive actions” in fighting terrorism, expanding humanitarian access and reinforcing a cease-fire in conflict areas, but rights groups say the decision is premature as there has been little progress on human rights. The decision, which . . . Read More

US nominates new religious freedom ambassador

US nominates new religious freedom ambassador
US President Donald Trump intends to nominate Sam Brownback, a Republican Governor from Kansas, as Ambassador-at-large for International Religious Freedom, the White House has announced. He will become head of the State Department’s Office of International Religious Freedom which is dedicated to monitoring religious freedom abuses around the world. Religious . . . Read More

Sudanese pastors pressured to ‘inform’ or stand trial

Sudanese pastors pressured to ‘inform’ or stand trial
Forty-eight-year-old father of three Rev. Yamane Abraha received an ultimatum in Khartoum following a trip to Ethiopia in the autumn of 2015. “[Sudanese government] security threatened me, saying I would have to appear in court either as a witness, or an accused,” the Evangelical Baptist Church of Khartoum pastor told . . . Read More

Coptic monk kidnapped in Darfur released

An Egyptian-born monk has been released, 40 days after he was abducted in Sudan’s embattled Darfur region, reports Fides. Rev. Ghabrial al-Antony, a Coptic Orthodox monk working in Nyala, South Darfur, was kidnapped on 14 April by an armed group, not far from the refugee camp in Atash. According to . . . Read More