NEWS


Christian Solidarity Worldwide works in over 20 countries across Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America, defending everyone’s right to freedom of religion or belief. Three quarters of the world’s population lives in countries with severe restrictions on their religious freedom. It’s one of the most widely-violated human rights in the world. Our vision is of a world where everyone is free to choose their beliefs, to hold and practice any religion they like, or none at all.

  • CHINA | CSW Marks 709 Crackdown Anniversary           7.9.2020

    July 9 marked the fifth anniversary of China’s infamous 709 Crackdown in which over 300 lawyers, human rights defenders, and their colleagues and family members were detained, interrogated or imprisoned. The 709 Crackdown, named after the date ... READ THIS STORY

  • ERITREA | Christians Arrested at Gatherings                 7.9.2020

    Reports have emerged of the arrest and imprisonment of 45 people at Christian gatherings in Eritrea’s capital city, Asmara, in April and June 2020. There were 15 Christians arrested as they attended a worship service in a home in the Mai Chehot area of Asmara ... READ THIS STORY

  • PAKISTAN | Christian Homeowner Shot                             7.8.2020

    A Pakistani Christian homeowner has died from injuries after being shot several times by his neighbor. Nadeem Joseph and his mother-in-law Elizabeth Masih were shot several times on June 4 in their new home, just days after the family moved into ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Prayer Home Ransacked                                            7.7.2020

    Two Christian families from Dassmora village, Azamgarh District, Uttar Pradesh, were forced to flee their village July 4, leaving their homes and livestock behind amid fears for their lives. Christians in the village began to experience harassment on July 2, when a mob... READ THI STORY

  • NIGERIA | Boko Haram Attacks Unreported                     7.3.2020

    The Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, Church of the Brethren in Nigeria) reported that Boko Haram terrorists carried out over “50 different attacks on different communities between the end of 2019 to June 2020,” most of which were “unreported or under ... READ THIS STORY

  • SUDAN | Renewed Protests Call for Reform                   7.1.2020

    Protesters gathered in several cities, towns and villages across Sudan on June 30 to commemorate the first anniversary of a power-sharing deal between the military and civilians, and to demand an acceleration in democratic reforms and the transition towards civilian ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Illegal Occupants Instructed to Vacate        6.30.2020

    Hindutva nationalists broke into and occupied a tuition center owned by a Christian organization in the Dayal Nagar Sector, Faridabad District, Haryana State, India on June 20. The center, which is administered by the Karuna Welfare Society, is a social services ... READ THIS STORY

  • CHINA | Beijing Passes National Security Law             6.30.2020

    The National People’s Congress Standing Committee, China’s highest legislative body, passed a new national security law for Hong Kong amid grave human rights concerns raised by activists and residents. Religious communities in the city, as well as the US ... READ THIS STORY

  • TURKEY | Workers Given Deportation Orders              6.30.2020

    Two Christian workers received deportation orders from the Turkish authorities. These are the latest expulsions in what appears to be an official campaign to remove foreign Christian workers from the country ... READ THIS STORY

  • EGYPT | Men Sentenced for Spreading Shi’a Islam      6.29.2020

    A National Security Court in Mashtoul el Souk, Al Sharqiyya Governorate, Egypt, has imprisoned two men for “spreading and promoting” the Shi’a School of Islam. Mustafa Al-Ramli and Mahmoud Youssef were found guilty June 27, and each sentenced to one year in prison ... READ THIS STORY

  • SUDAN | Christian Killed in Mob Attack                         6.29.2020

    One South Sudanese Christian was killed and four were seriously injured in a mob attack June 20 in the Shagla area of Omdurman, west of the capital, Khartoum. Mariel Bang, 35, died when a mob of young Muslim men shouting “Allah Akbar” (God is Greater) randomly ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Church Set on Fire                                                  6.23.2020

    A church in Kaaraithittu village, Chengalpattu District, Tamil Nadu, was set on fire by unidentified people on June 13. The contents of the church were damaged beyond repair. The Church of True Peace, led by Pastor Ramesh Jebraj, who is blind, took 10 years to construct ... READ THIS STORY

  • IRAN | Christians Receive Appeal Outcome                   6.22.2020

    An appeal verdict wasreceived in the cases of three of the four members of the Church of Iran in Rasht who were serving 10-year sentences. The church’s leader, Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani, and Deacon Saheb Fadaie, have each received six-year sentences... READ THIS STORY

  • CHINA | Human Rights Policy Act Signed                        6.18.2020

    Uyghur groups welcomed the signing into law of the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act of 2020 by US President Donald Trump on June 17. The Act authorizes sanctions against Chinese officials deemed responsible for the mass arbitrary detention of ethnic minorities ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Christian Murdered Because of Faith               6.16.2020

    Kande Mudu (Philip), a 27-year-old man who converted to Christianity four years ago, was murdered in Bari village, Khunti District, Jharkhand on June 7. His family was the only Christian family in its village and faced local opposition and threats to their lives, including a violent attack ... READ THIS STORY

  • CHINA | Authorities Raid Church                                      6.15.2020

    Xiamen city authorities destroyed property and parts of a building belonging to Xingguang Church on June 11 in the second raid on the church in just over a month, according to an open statement by a Chinese pastor on social media. Authorities had previously shut down ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Boy Murdered in Attack                                           6.9.2020

    A 14-year-old Christian boy was murdered in the village of Kenduguda, Malkangiri District, Odhisa, on June 4. According to a First Information Report (FIR) registered with local police, the victim has been identified as Samaru Madkami and was picked up from his house ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Child Killed in Attack                                           6.5.2020

    A three-year-old girl has died from injuries sustained when her community in the southern part of Kaduna state was attacked by armed assailants of Fulani ethnicity on June 3. Elizabeth Samaila suffered multiple machete cuts to the head during ... READ THIS STORY

  • IRAN | Christians Ordered to Begin Sentences             6.2.2020

    CSW’s sources confirmed that four Iranian Christians have been instructed by the authorities to present themselves at Evin prison in Tehran to begin serving five-year sentences. Hossein Kadivar, Khalil Dehghanpour, Kamal Naamanian and Mohammed Vafadar were arrested ... READ THIS STORY

  • SUDAN | Government Agrees to Create Commission  5.22.2020

    Sudan’s transitional government and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (Agar) have jointly agreed to the creation of an independent national commission for religious freedom and a Ministry for Peace and Human Rights ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Verdict Rendered for Abducted Girl           5.22.2020

    CSW welcomes the verdict in the case of Ese Rita Oruru, who was kidnapped from her home in southern Nigeria in 2015 at the age of 13 and trafficked to Kano state in the north, where she was forcibly converted and obliged to “marry” her abductor ... READ THIS STORY

  • EGYPT | Church Buildings Legalized                                5.21.2020

    Egyptian authorities legalized 70 church buildings for worship purposes on May 19. The decision was issued following a meeting of the government committee that oversees the legalization of churches, chaired by the Prime Minister. This decision brings the total number ... READ THIS STORY

  • NEPAL | Call for Charges to be Dropped                        5.15.2020

    CSW has called on the government of Nepal to drop all charges against Pastor Keshav Raj Acharya of Abundant Harvest Church in Pokhara, who was first arrested March 23 amid concerns for his well-being. His case highlights serious concerns ... READ THIS STORY

  • SUDAN | Call for Establishment of Commission          5.15.2020

    CSW welcomes calls by the Sudanese Peoples Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N), led by Malik Agar, to establish an independent religious freedom commission in Sudan. The SPLM-N is an armed group based in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states which fought ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Christian Families Assaulted                                5.13.2020

    Three Christian families in the tribal village of Salepal, Bastar District, Chhattisgarh were beaten and threatened with death when they refused to participate in worship associated with the animist religion, which is practiced by the majority of villagers there.  The incident happened ... READ THIS STORY

  • SYRIA | Christian Families Return to Kharaba             5.13.2020

    CSW has learned that approximately 100 displaced Christian families have returned to their homes in the village of Kharaba, in the vicinity of Daraa governorate in Southwestern Syria. Kharaba was home to nearly 1,200 Christians before it was taken ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Family Attacked, Injured                                      5.7.2020

    A family of four was shot and injured on the evening of May 5 by armed assailants who invaded their home in Ghana Ropp, Barkin Ladi Local Government Area (LGA), Plateau state, Nigeria, and opened fire at close range ... READ THIS STORY

  • IRAN | Pastor’s Appeal Verdict Expected                          5.7.2020

    CSW has learned that a verdict on the appeal by Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani and three other members of the Church of Iran denomination will be issued on May 11. The four Christians are currently serving 10-year prison sentences on charges of “acting against national ... READ THIS STORY

  • EGYPT | Activist’s Detention Extended                             5.6.2020

    The Egyptian authorities have extended the detention of prominent Coptic human rights defender Rami Kamil for a further 45 days. The extension occurred on May 4 and in the absence of Kamil and his lawyers. CSW's sources report that Kamil’s lawyers are preparing ... READ THIS STORY

  • CHINA | Church Members Injured, Property Damaged 5.4.2020

    Authorities in China’s Xiamen shut down a Sunday service at Xingguang Church on May 3, injuring several church members and damaging property during the process. Witnesses report that police violently dispersed church members, removing those ... READ THIS STORY

  • CHINA | Members Injured During Raid                               5.4.2020

    Authorities in China’s Xiamen shut down a Sunday service at Xingguang Church on May 3, injuring several church members and damaging property during the process. Witnesses report that police violently dispersed church members, removing by force those who resisted ... READ THIS STORY

  • CAR | Armed Groups Withdraw from Government     4.30.2020

    Five armed groups in the Central African Republic (CAR) have resigned from the country’s government of national unity, raising questions over the future of the peace agreement signed in February 2019. The groups issued a press release on April 25 criticizing ... READ THIS STORY

  • CUBA | Harassment of Journalist Continues           4.24.2020  

    Cuban independent journalist, Yoe Suárez, was “visited” in his home by two State Security agents on April 22 who proceeded to question and threaten him. According to Suárez’s Twitter page, the two officials came to his house and asked to talk with him ... READ THIS STORY

  • GLOBAL | CSW Asks for Rights Upheld                            4.22.2020

    In a statement issued April 22, CSW has urged states around the world to adhere to rule of law and protect fundamental rights and freedoms, including the right to freedom of religion or belief, as they adopt unprecedented measures to limit the spread of Covid-19 ... READ THIS STORY

  • IRAN | Bakhteri Released from Prison                             4.14.2020

    Iranian Christian Fatemeh Bakhteri (Aylar) was released from prison April 12. Bakhteri, 35, from the city of Rasht, is from a Muslim background, and is a member of the Church of Iran denomination. She was sentenced to 12 months in prison on Sept. 22, 2018 after being found guilty ... READ THIS STORY

  • BURMA | Military Bombs Village                                          4.9.2020

    The Burmese military bombed a village in Paletwa Township, Chin State on April 7, killing seven civilians including two children, a mother and infant. At least eight other civilians were injured and eight houses burned ... READ THIS STORY

  • IRAN | Release of Christians Welcomed                            4.7.2020

    CSW welcomes news that two Christians from the northern city of Karaj, Pastor Amin Khaki and Rokhsare Ghanbari (Mahrokh), were asked not to return to prison to complete their sentences following their temporarily release amid concerns about the spread of COVID-19 ... READ THIS STORY

  • CHINA | Lawyer Released into Quarantine                      4.6.2020

    Chinese human rights lawyer, Wang Quanzhang, was released from prison April 5 and immediately placed into quarantine for 14 days, hundreds of miles from his family. According to Wang’s wife, Li Wenzu, who has continuously called for his release, Wang was released ... READ THIS STORY

  • CUBA | Journalist Threatened with Imprisonment      4.2.2020

    Yoe Suárez, a Cuban independent journalist, was summoned to Siboney Police Station in Havana on March 27, where he was interrogated by police and threatened with imprisonment and unspecified “repercussions” for his family ... READ THIS STORY

  • CUBA | Pastor Leyva Released                                           3.3.1.2020

    Cuban Pastor Adya Expósito Leyva, who was imprisoned along with her husband Ramón Rigal on April 16, was released from detention March 29. Pastor Expósito Leyva and Rev. Ramón Rigal are representatives of the Abundant Faith Ministry International ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Hindu Nationalists Disrupt Prayer Meeting   3.26.2020

    A private prayer meeting at the home of a Christian pastor in India’s Tamil Nadu state was disrupted March 21 by members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Hindu Munani, a Tamil Nadu-based Hindu nationalist group which is ideologically aligned ... READ THIS STORY

  • TURKEY | Body of Catholic Priest’s Mother Found    3.25.2020

    The body of Simoni Diril, 65, was found March 20 in a mountainous place near the village of Mehre (Kovankaya) in the Beytüssebap District of Sirnak Province in south-eastern Turkey, where she was abducted along with her husband, Hurmuz, who remains ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Bishop’s Wife Released                                       3.23.2020

    The wife of the Bishop of Bari Diocese in Kano State, who was abducted by gunmen on March 10, was released. The release of Saratu Zubairu was confirmed by the Primate of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), The Most Rev. Nicholas D. Okoh ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Children Escape Government Orphanage    3.18.2020

    Six children from the Du Merci Centers in Kano and Kaduna States, Nigeria, temporarily escaped the government-run Nassarawa Children’s Home in Kano, where they have been held since December 2019, to attend church for the first ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | CSW Calls for Police Investigation                    3.16.2020

    CSW called on police in Tamil Nadu, India, to take action to investigate an incident on March 5 in which a Christian couple from Pakkam village, Gudiyatham, Vellore District in the state were assaulted and humiliated for sharing Christian gospel ... READ THIS STORY


  • NIGERIA | Bishop’s Wife Abducted                                    3.11.2020

    The Secretariat of the Anglican Church in Nigeria confirmed that the wife of the Bishop of Bari Diocese in Kano state has been abducted. Saratu Zubairu and a diocesan secretary, identified as Deborah, were kidnapped on the morning of March 10. They were taken ... READ THIS STORY

  • IRAN | Sentence Against Pastor Upheld                           3.4.2020

    A five-year prison sentence delivered to Pastor Matthias Haghnejad was upheld Feb. 25 without a hearing, after Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamanei reportedly permitted the judge to bypass court procedures, according to CSW’s ... READ THIS STORY

  • PAKISTAN | Laborer Killed for Allegedly Polluting     3.3.2020

    Saleem Masih, a 22-year-old Christian laborer from the city of Kasur, south of Lahore, Pakistan, died of injuries sustained when he was beaten by four men who accused him of “contaminating” a well of water by bathing ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Police Assault Christians                                     2.28.2020

    Nine Christians were beaten by the police Feb. 21 after being accused of “forceful conversion” in the town of Sathankulam, Thoothukudi District, in India’s Tamil Nadu state. On Feb. 18, Pastor Shajin from Devasabai church led a team of seven pastors ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Sharibu’s Mother Joins Protest                      2.19.2020

    Rebecca Sharibu, the mother of 16-year-old schoolgirl Leah Sharibu, joined a protest outside the Nigerian High Commission in London which was organized by CSW to mark the second anniversary of her daughter’s abduction and calling on the Nigerian ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Christians Attacked While Traveling                 2.17.2020

    A group of 70 Christians were attacked Feb. 5 while travelling home from the Third National Congress of the Synod of Pentecostal Churches in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. Three men on motorcycles targeted the bus and minivan in which the group was travelling ... READ THIS STORY

  • EGYPT | Detention Extended for a Second Time           2.10.2020

    Coptic activist Rami Kamil had his detention extended after his court hearing was postponed for a second time. Kamil was supposed to appear before the Supreme State Security Prosecution on Jan. 19. However, on the day of the hearing, and after waiting for ... READ THIS STORY

  • TURKEY | Priest Indicted on Terrorism Charges          2.10.2020

    Assyrian Christian Priest, Father Sefer Bileçen (known as Father Aho), was charged with joining a terrorist organization. Father Aho was indicted Jan. 16; however, the authorities withheld the information until Feb. 8 ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Kidnappers Execute Hostages                           2.4.2020

    Michael Nnadi, one of four Catholic seminarians abducted by armed men from the Good Shepherd Major Seminary in Kaduna state on Jan. 8, was murdered by his captors. The death of the 18-year-old philosophy student was announced in a statement issued  ... READ THIS STORY

  • SUDAN | Christian Prevented from Leaving Country  2.3.2020

    Sudanese Christian businessman, Ashraf Samir Mousad Obid, was informed by Sudan’s Ministry of the Interior on Jan. 30 that he is not allowed to leave or enter the country. Obid had been detained at Khartoum airport three days ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Association Launches Prayer, Fasting         1.30.2020

    The Christian Association of Nigeria has called on churches in Nigeria and abroad to join in three days of “Special Fasting and Prayer,” beginning Jan. 31. The initiative is being launched in response to “the gruesome murder of the Chairman of CAN ... READ THIS STORY

  • SUDAN | Businessman Detained at Airport                     1.28.2020

    Sudanese Christian businessman, Ashraf Samir Mousad Obid, was detained at Khartoum Airport on Jan. 27, under the orders of the General Intelligence Service. Obid was returning to Sudan for the first time since fleeing the country in 2015, following a campaign of harassment ... READ THIS STORY

  • SUDAN | Churches Attacked Twice                                   1.24.2020

    Three churches in Blue Nile State were each burned down twice in the three weeks leading up to Jan. 16. The news comes amid criticism from local human rights defenders of the decision by the United States State Department to remove Sudan from its list of ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Terrorist Executes Christian Student         1.23.2020

    The Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), an offshoot of the Boko Haram terrorist group, released a video showing the execution of a 22-year-old Christian student from Plateau State, Nigeria, by a minor ... READ THIS STORY

  • INDIA | Prayer Meeting Disrupted                                      1.23.2020

    A private prayer meeting was disrupted Jan. 18 in Pogulur village, Coimbatore District, in India’s Tamil Nadu state. Christians at the meeting were threatened, insulted and intimidated. As a meeting of approximately 250 pastors and their families drew to a close ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Released Hostage Reports Sharibu Alive    1.20.2020

    One of five aid workers released by the Islamic State West African Province faction of Boko Haram on Jan. 15 said that Leah Sharibu, the 16-year-old schoolgirl abducted from her school in northeast Nigeria in February 2018, is alive ... READ THIS STORY

  • EGYPT | Coptic Activist’s Detention Extended            1.17.2020  

    The detention of Egyptian Coptic activist, Rami Kamil, who is facing terrorism charges, was extended by 15 days after he was interrogated in prison by prosecutors. He was reportedly been told to stop writing about violations of freedom of religion or belief if he wants ... READ THIS STORY

  • TURKEY | Assyrian Christian Priest Released                 1.15.2020

    CSW sources have confirmed that Assyrian Christian priest, Father Sefer Bileçen (known as Father Aho), was released on bail Jan. 14 and is awaiting trial. Father Aho, who has been taking care of the 1,500 year-old Mor Yakub Monastery in Mardin province ... READ THIS STORY

  • TURKEY | Assyrian Christians Arrested                           1.14.2020

    Three Assyrian Christians were arrested on Jan. 9 in the province of Mardin in Southeast Turkey. CSW sources report that Turkish Gendarmerie in the Assyrian town of Üçköy (Arkash in Syriac language) arrested Father Sefer Bileçen ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Abducted Chairman Makes Video Plea             1.7.2020

    The Shekau faction of the terrorist group Boko Haram released a video of the chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Adamawa state, who was declared missing following a raid on Michika town Jan. 3. In the video, sent to Nigerian journalist ... READ THIS STORY

  • NIGERIA | Orphanage Founder Detained                            1.4.2020

    Professor Richard Solomon Musa Tarfa, co-founder of an orphanage for unwanted children, who had been detained since Christmas Day, was granted bail Jan. 3 by a court in Kano state, northern Nigeria. The professor will be released upon payment of $13,800 ... READ THIS STORY