Burkina Faso: concerns over reported rise in extremism

A church in Burkina Faso where ... of the population is Christian. (Photo: Photo: khym54 via Flickr; CC 2.0)
Christian and Muslim leaders in Burkina Faso met last week to discuss interreligious dialogue amidst growing concerns about the spread of violent Islamic extremism in the country, reports Fides. The landlocked West African nation, which borders Mali, Niger, Benin, Togo, Ghana and Ivory Coast, is majority-Muslim (around 60%), but also . . . Read More

Egypt: Protestant leader rejects community reconciliation system

Thousands attend Kasr El Dobara Evanglical Church in Cairo each week. There are thought to be as many as 2m Evangelicals in Egypt
The head of Egypt’s Protestant Church has said he urges clergy not to take part in “reconciliation sessions” that aim to resolve community conflicts without the involvement of the police and legal system. Rev. Dr. Andrea Zaki said he “strongly” opposed the scheme because it renders the law “absent”. The reconciliation . . . Read More

‘Extremists given a free hand’ – Human Rights Commission of Pakistan

On 17 December more than 11 people died and dozens were injured during a suicide attack on the Bethel Methodist Church in Quetta, Pakistan. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Two Pakistani Christians were killed and at least three injured in a drive-by shooting on Sunday (15 April) in Essa Nagri, a Christian-majority area in Quetta, capital of the impoverished Balochistan province in the southwest. The victims, aged 19 and 28, had just left a church service when they were . . . Read More

Commonwealth worst offenders urged to face up to poor levels of religious freedom

Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari received Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, at Nigeria's High Commission in London on 11 April 2018. (Photo: Facebook)
A charity that supports persecuted Christians has urged Commonwealth heads of government meeting in England next week to address poor levels of religious liberty in their countries. The charity Open Doors warned that unless representatives of the 53 Commonwealth nations “explicitly include[ed] the right to freedom of religion or belief . . . Read More

Persecuted Christians celebrate Easter with mixed emotions

Flag of Syria is waving as sign of victory over the destroyed heavily damaged city of Aleppo. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Easter this year was a time of mixed emotions for the Christians who live under pressure for their faith. While political and religious leaders called for peace, reconciliation and brotherhood, Christians in countries like Syria and the Philippines continued to face violence and its consequences. Below, World Watch Monitor gives . . . Read More

Saudi school textbooks still ‘promote hatred toward religious minorities’ – USCIRF

A school complex in Medina, Saudi Arabia. (Photo by Ikhlasul Amal via Flickr; CC 2.0)
School textbooks in Saudi Arabia still include content “promoting violence and hatred toward religious minorities and others”, according to the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). Even though the Saudi government has been “engaged in textbook reform for the last 15 years”, a new study by USCIRF found . . . Read More

Alexandria Palm Sunday bombing, one year on – lone dad who lost his wife, uncle and nephew

Alexandria Palm Sunday bombing, one year on – lone dad who lost his wife, uncle and nephew
On Palm Sunday 2017, Magid was selling palm branches with his wife and son by the gate of St Mark’s Cathedral in Alexandria, Egypt, when a suicide bomber detonated his device near them, killing Magid’s wife, Hannan. Eight worshippers, four Muslim police officers and four Muslim passers-by were killed, and 35 . . . Read More