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Fourteen members and leaders of the Khartoum Bahri Evangelical Church were detained on 7 July for demonstrating against the seizure of the church’s training school.

The property had been sold by a “committee” that was appointed by the government but which the church does not recognise and which has been ruled illegal by the Administrative Court.

Police first arrested 11 people, who were released after intervention from the church’s lawyer. When they returned to the church compound and continued to object to the takeover of the building, the police returned and detained 17 people, three of whom were released shortly afterwards (members of the government-appointed “committee”). Even after the prosecutor had ordered the release (pending trial) of the remaining 14 detainees, the police refused to release them.

On 10 July, all 14 were charged before the Bahri Criminal Court. The court sentenced 13 of them to a fine of 300 Sudanese Pounds ($65) for obstructing the police, and the other one to a fine of 500 Sudanese Pounds ($110) for obstructing the police and disturbing the peace. They were all released after paying the fines.

Five of them were released pending trial, as they will be charged for a breach of a signed commitment. They were detained in the first round of arrests on 7 July and then released after signing a statement saying they would not “disturb the peace” again. They were then re-arrested in the second round of arrests and accused of violating the conditions of their earlier release. No date has been set for their trial.

Sources: Middle East Concern, Christian Solidarity Worldwide

Prayer Points

• Pray those who have been charged will be treated justly; ask the Lord to grant them wisdom when dealing with the authorities.
• Pray those involved will trust in the Lord and will not be fearful for the future; pray the Lord will grant them strength.
• Pray this case may be used by the Lord as a witness for the Gospel.

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