Bout, Sudan, January 30, 2020
Christian churches are under attack in Sudan.
Three churches, including an Orthodox church, have been burnt down twice in the span of less than a month in the village of Bout in the Blue Nile state of the Republic of Sudan. The other churches attacked are from the Catholic Church and the Sudan Internal Church, reports the local Human Rights and Development Organization (HUDO).
The Orthodox churches in Sudan are within the jurisdiction of Metropolitan Savvas of Nubia.
The churches were first set ablaze on December 28, and after the congregations began to rebuild them with local materials, they were torched again on January 16. The December fires were reported to the local police, but they did not launch an investigation or take any preventative measures.
The second round of arsons was also reported to the police. The Sudanese Minister of Religious Affairs Nasr al-Din Mufreh said that one suspect had been arrested, questions, and released due to lack of evidence, reports faithwire.com. If the fires “occurred as a result of a criminal offense” the criminals will be “identified, pursued and brought to justice,” he said.
HUDO calls upon the Sudanese Ministry of Internal Affairs to hold the police accountable for taking no preventative measures, thereby allowing the second round of fires, and the Ministry of Justice to take the necessary steps to protect the right to worship for the affected citizens.
More than 95% of the Sudanese population identifies as Muslims, while the majority of Christians there adhere to Catholicism or Anglicanism.
Open Doors USA lists Sudan as the seventh most dangerous country in which to live as a Christian, warning that “Christian converts with a Muslim background are particularly at risk.”