Russia’s religious communities face ‘unclear’ requirements

Russia’s religious communities face ‘unclear’ requirements
Legal requirements applied to the expression of freedom of religion in Russia impose a significant burden on religious communities not recognised by the state – in the shape of fines, legal costs and bureaucracy – reports regional news agency Forum 18. The requirements are “unclear” and applied “inconsistently”, Forum 18 . . . Read More

‘State-sponsored repression’ behind Eritrea’s refugee epidemic

Eritrea remains “one of the worst examples of state-sponsored repression of freedom of religion or belief in the world”, says USCIRF Commissioner. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
“State-sponsored repression” is the reason Eritrea is one of the world’s main sources of refugees, a US human rights commission has heard. The East African country is not at war, nor does it suffer from terrorism, but some estimate that as many as 10 per cent of Eritreans have fled . . . Read More

Thousands of churches closed in Rwanda, as Cameroon considers following suit

Pentecostal churches, like this one in Ethopia's capital Addis Baba, are mushrooming in sub-Sahara Africa. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Rwanda has closed thousands churches in the country since February for alleged “noise pollution” and failing to comply with building regulations. Now Cameroon – another majority-Christian country – is considering following suit. The call to shut down some of Cameroon’s Pentecostal churches follows reports of gross misconduct by a number . . . Read More

Indonesia sees reduction in religious freedom violations

In 2010, Bogor’s GKI Yasmin church was sealed and padlocked by order of the mayor and city government. They still hold Sunday services outside the church, and stage monthly services outside Indonesia’s Presidential Palace.. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Indonesia saw fewer violations of religious freedom in 2017 than the year before, a national human rights group said this week, although it said it remained concerned about “the politicisation of religious and social differences”. In its ‘2017 Report on Religious Freedom and Religious Minorities in Indonesia’, the Setara Institute . . . Read More

Ethiopian Christians arrested for ‘praying against government’

Christians worship during a church service in a town in central Ethiopia. (Photo: World Watch Monitor, 2016)
Seven Ethiopian Christians have been arrested and detained in the north-western town of Chagni on suspicion of praying against the government. A local source told World Watch Monitor the seven men, members of the Meserete Kiristos church, were followed and overheard by a local militia group when they went up a . . . Read More