Eritrea: mental health challenges for Christian man freed after 13 years in prison

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)
Shiden* was young and full of optimism for the future when he was imprisoned for his Christian faith. For the next 13 years he was exposed to torture of different kinds, including months in a very small cell in solitary confinement, and even his eventual release failed to bring about . . . Read More

Turkmenistan’s secret additions to already restrictive Religion Law

Turkmenistan’s secret additions to already restrictive Religion Law
It’s been over a year since the Central Asian state of Turkmenistan added further restrictions to its Religion Law, but the changes were introduced in such secrecy that few knew about them until well after the event. It wasn’t until January this year that regional news agency Forum 18 shed . . . Read More

US missionary appeals to European Court of Human Rights over Russian law

US missionary appeals to European Court of Human Rights over Russian law
UPDATE (29 March 2017) Today, Donald Ossewaarde filed an application to the European Court of Human Rights. The US Baptist preacher argues his right to religious freedom has been violated. Mr. Ossewaarde had held weekly Bible meetings at his home in the Russian city of Oryol, 300 kilometres south of Moscow, . . . Read More

Islamic extremism causing fresh concerns in the Philippines

Islamic extremism causing fresh concerns in the Philippines
Christians in the Philippines are concerned at a rise in Islamic extremism in the country. A local church leader, who wished to remain anonymous, told World Watch Monitor about a recent meeting of around 3,000 Islamists on one island – the name of which he wouldn’t say, for fear of . . . Read More

Russia: Church reacts as ‘anti-missionary bill’ becomes law

Russia: Church reacts as ‘anti-missionary bill’ becomes law
On 7 July, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law a bill referred to by one Christian organisation as an “anti-missionary bill”. The new law, known more commonly as the “Yarovaya” law (the name of one of its authors), which will come into effect on 20 July, was formally introduced . . . Read More

Indian Christian man forced to separate from Hindu wife by right-wing activists

Indian Christian man forced to separate from Hindu wife by right-wing activists
Narendra Modi, then chief minister of Gujarat state, at a BJP rally in 2009.Flickr / Al Jazeera English / Creative Commons   An Indian couple who married Sept. 26 had their marriage annulled five days later by police under pressure from Hindu nationalists. The couple, Joseph Pawar and Ayushi Wani, were . . . Read More