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Sudanese authorities demolish church outside Khartoum

By Nangayi Guyson –

Kampala, Uganda –Sudanese Christians were astonished on Sunday as they witnessed their church outside the capital Khartoum bulldozed by authorities, Sudan Tribune reports.

Members of Soba Al-Aradi Church located 19 km from Khartoum were left wondering after their church was demolished by Sudanese authorities in the middle of the church service on Sunday.

A statement released by a group called International Solidarity Campaign with Sudanese Christians (ISCSC)” indicates that after demolition, two pastors Paul Salah and Naji Abdallah” of the same church were arrested.

Sudan government headed by President Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir who has ruled the Arab nation since 1978 and is wanted at the ICC for crimes against humanity has vowed to make Sudan ’’100 percent Islamic constitution’’.

Despite government officials pleading with the government to stop Churches’ demolition, many churches have continued to face demolition.

The statement by the activists group has called for an international campaign to guarantee freedom of worship for the Sudanese Christians and to protect their churches stressing that “Sudanese Christians are suffering from freedom of worship, arrestment of pastors, and confiscation of church properties”.

Sudanese authorities earlier this year delayed a plan to demolish some 27 churches including Soba Al Aradi church, pointing they are not officially recognized as churches.

The church leaders have said authorities in the country have refused to give them building permits for the construction of a church. They stress this situation force them to resort to these houses of prayer in the far suburbs of Khartoum.

On the other side, Sudanese authorities say they guarantee the freedom of religion pointing to the many churches in the capital.

The Situation of Sudanese and south Sudanese Christians in the country has been aggravated since the separation of South Sudan in July 2011.

Sudan has been on the World Watch List since 1993 and has almost always been ranked in the top 20 over the years. Persecution in the country is systematic and reminiscent of ethnic cleansing. Under the authoritarian rule of al-Bashir and his party, there is no true rule of law in Sudan; freedom of expression has been almost entirely curtailed.

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