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Religious Freedom

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Sister Momeka: Liberate Christian Lands from ISIS

(UPDATED) After State Department approves visit, nun tells US congressmen that Iraqi Christians wish to return home.
Sister Momeka: Liberate Christian Lands from ISIS
AsiaNews

The US State Department relented and Sister Diana Momeka received a vistor's visa to speak out about religious persecution in the Middle East at a congressional hearing earlier this week.

"Uprooted and forcefully displaced, we have realized that ISIS’s plan ...

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Angola Crackdown on Apocalyptic Christians Turns Deadly

Government closes churches, while politicians dispute whether 13 or hundreds of former Adventist's followers were killed.
Angola Crackdown on Apocalyptic Christians Turns Deadly
YouTube screenshot - Club-K Angola

Weeks after a military raid on a Christian camp left more than a dozen people dead, Angola has banned nine churches for failing to operate within the law.

Following the April 16 attack on the Light of the World community, led by former Seventh-day Adventist Jose Kalupeteka, ...

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After Removing 400 Crosses, China Proposes Where Churches Can Put Them Instead

(UPDATED) China protests USCIRF report, but campaign to 'de-Christianize' skyline of China's Jerusalem continues.
After Removing 400 Crosses, China Proposes Where Churches Can Put Them Instead
Courtesy of China Aid

[Updated with China draft law and NYT report]

Days after at least a dozen crosses were forcibly removed from churches, China formally protested a United States report on its lack of religious freedom. Now a proposal has surfaced to ban crosses entirely from the rooftops ...

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Violence, Persecution Spread in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian forces condemned for ongoing aggression. Orthodox Church criticized.
Violence, Persecution Spread in Eastern Ukraine
Church in Chains

Last June, pro-Russian separatists raided a Pentecostal church service in eastern Ukraine and kidnapped four Christian leaders. Some 35 days later, authorities discovered the bodies of the four, who had been tortured, in a mass grave.

The killings in Slovyansk, eastern Ukraine, ...

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13 Million Flee Religion-Linked Conflicts Worldwide

Federal agency calls for US to resettle at least 100,000 refugees per year.
13 Million Flee Religion-Linked Conflicts Worldwide
Lantos Foundation

More than 13 million people worldwide have fled conflicts and crises in which religion has been a key factor, according to the 2015 report from the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF).

The annual report released today reveals that most of the 13 million ...

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Nepal Earthquake Collapses Churches during Weekly Worship Services

(UPDATED) Scores of deaths will likely revive burial debate. Disaster delays religious freedoms of new constitution.
Nepal Earthquake Collapses Churches during Weekly Worship Services
Niranjan Shrestha / AP

Editor's note: As aid organizations struggle to reach Nepal residents reeling from an earthquake 16 times more powerful than Haiti’s 2010 disaster, evangelical groups including World Vision, Convoy of Hope, and Samaritan’s Purse are racing to help survivors ...

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More Martyrs: ISIS Executes Dozens of Ethiopian Christians in Libya

Propaganda video released the same day Justin Welby arrives in Cairo to honor the previous 21 victims.
More Martyrs: ISIS Executes Dozens of Ethiopian Christians in Libya
Mosa'ab Elshamy / AP Images

Once again, ISIS has orchestrated and filmed the dramatic mass killing of African Christians who refuse to deny their faith.

This time, the approximately 28 men targeted by the Libya affiliate of the self-proclaimed Islamic State (also known as Daesh) were Ethiopian Christians. ...

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Abortion by Dismemberment Banned in Kansas

Surge in pro-life legislation in states enters fifth year.
Abortion by Dismemberment Banned in Kansas
G.Skidmore

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback this week signed a first-in-the-nation law that prohibits dismembering the body of an unborn child during an abortion.

“Dismemberment abortion kills a baby by tearing her apart limb from limb,” said National Right to Life (NRL) Director ...

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NY Cardinal, 'AD' Producers Step Up Campaign against Mideast Persecution

80 leaders sign letter. Pope Francis critical of weak response to ‘unacceptable crimes.’
NY Cardinal, 'AD' Producers Step Up Campaign against Mideast Persecution
Courtesy, AINA

New York Roman Catholic Cardinal Timothy Dolan and AD: The Bible Continues miniseries producers Roma Downey and Mark Burnett have assembled a diverse group of mostly US church and ministry leaders to intensify their advocacy on behalf of the persecuted church in the Middle ...

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Terrorists Target Christians at Kenyan College; Nearly 150 Dead

Al-Shabaab takes hostages, wounds 65 more in latest attack.
Terrorists Target Christians at Kenyan College; Nearly 150 Dead
AP

Christians were the primary targets of a terrorist attack on a Kenyan university that has left as many as 150 people dead.

A spokesperson for Al-Shabaab confirmed that the Somali militants had deliberately gone after Christians.

"There are many dead bodies of Christians ...

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New Evidence of War Crimes, Genocide against Iraqi Christians, Yazidis

More than 100 witnesses come forward detailing 'unspeakable brutality.'
New Evidence of War Crimes, Genocide against Iraqi Christians, Yazidis
Courtesy, AINA

“ISIL systematically separated the men from the women and young children. The men were subsequently taken away to nearby ditches and summarily executed. The mission obtained credible reports about the rape of young girls, including nine and six year-olds. Thirteen teenage ...

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Suicide Bombers Attack Sunday Services in Pakistan's Largest Christian Neighborhood

Taliban-linked killings provoke unusually violent reaction by Christian minority.
Suicide Bombers Attack Sunday Services in Pakistan's Largest Christian Neighborhood
Fareed Khan / AP

Update (Mar. 19): Christian leaders in Lahore have publicly asked for forgiveness for the retailiatory violence, as well as safety as Muslims gather for worship this Friday.

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Christian protesters turned unusually violent after suicide bombers attacked Sunday services ...

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ISIS Kidnaps 100 Christians in Syria: Prisoner Swap, or Libya-Style Propaganda?

(UPDATED) Christian leader: In light of 'barbaric record with the captured, the destiny of these families is a major concern to us.'
ISIS Kidnaps 100 Christians in Syria: Prisoner Swap, or Libya-Style Propaganda?
Twitter / EshuAssyrian3

Update (Feb. 25): Assyrian activists tell CNN that they expect ISIS to release a video today threatening to kill the approximately 150 Christian captives unless President Obama and other leaders end joint air strikes against the group.

An "official" confirmed ...

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Frank Wolf Calls for Safe Haven for Mideast Christians

Former congressman offers six-point plan. But killing continues as ISIL-linked terrorists behead 21 Christians in Libya.
Frank Wolf Calls for Safe Haven for Mideast Christians

...

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said, “This wanton killing of innocents is just the most recent of the many vicious acts perpetrated by ISIL-affiliated terrorists against the people of the region, including the murders of dozens of Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai, ...

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Robert P. George to Saudi Arabia: Whip Me Instead of Raif Badawi

Offering to take 100 lashes each, 7 of 9 USCIRF commissioners 'would rather share in' blogger's punishment than 'watch him being cruelly tortured.'
Robert P. George to Saudi Arabia: Whip Me Instead of Raif Badawi
Amnesty International / Facebook

Following Saudi Arabia’s decision to flog a dissident blogger 50 times on a weekly basis for the next five months, seven of the nine members of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) have asked the Muslim nation to whip them instead.

“Compassion, ...

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