Morning Star News, 6 March 2022
Church leaders in Sudan were detained and questioned last month after Muslim extremists upset about the presence of their worship building locked it shut.
Hard-line Muslims locked the building of the Church of Christ about 85 miles southeast of Khartoum on Feb. 21, said Dalman Hassan, an evangelist arrested on Feb. 27 and released with the church pastor later that day.
He said the Muslims accused church members of hostility toward Islam by holding gatherings on Fridays, the Muslim day of mosque prayer.
“They cause chaos and disrespect others’ religion,” read a charge against the church presented to officials, he said.
Church member Kotti Dalman said the Muslims also charged the church with providing food to children to win them to Christianity and with taking their land for the worship building.
Church members said the land belongs to a Catholic school, and that Muslims fabricated the land-grab charge because they don’t want a Christian congregation worshipping in the area. Police requested and received ownership papers showing the land did not belong to the Muslims, church members said.
Following two years of advances in religious freedom in Sudan after the end of the Islamist dictatorship under former President Omar al-Bashir in 2019, the spectre of state-sponsored persecution returned with a military coup on Oct. 25, 2021.