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Police in Darfur Region, Sudan have arrested four Christians under a law against apostasy that was annulled two years ago, according to local reports.

On 28 June, police arrested the Christians from the Sudanes Baptist Church in Zalingei, in western Sudan’s Central Darfur state, on charges of apostasy, detaining them until their release on bail on 5 July.

The Christian converts from Islam – Bader el Dean Haroon Abdel Jabaar, his brother Mohammad Haroon Abdel Jabaar, Tariq Adam Abdalla and Morthada Ismail – had also been arrested on 22 June and released the same day.

Christians in the area said they were arrested over allegations of apostasy under Article 126 of Sudan’s 1991 criminal code. In July 2020 the transitional government that took effect in September 2019 decriminalised apostasy, which had been punishable by death.

Although Sudan has taken some steps to reform laws that violate religious rights, most current statutes are still based on Islamic law, Christian leaders say.

Human rights activists said prosecutors have mistakenly used a repealed article of the criminal code against the four Christians.

The Christians were scheduled to appear in court this week. Police also reportedly confiscated their Bibles and a sound system belonging to the church.

Officers reportedly ordered the Christians to leave the area. The arrested men refused but have since gone into hiding. Muslim extremists in the area have called for their death, one of the arrested Christians said. 

Sources: Morning Star News, Sudania 24

Please Pray

  • Pray for justice on behalf of these believers and that the case against them will soon be resolved.
  • Ask the Lord to shield, protect and provide for these believers and their families. Pray He will frustrate the plans of those who wish to harm them.
  • Pray for the protection and boldness of front-line workers as they seek to share the gospel with local Muslims.