Last year, ISIS terrorists shocked the world after they savagely beheaded 21 Christians on a beach in Libya for their faith. Seven of these terrorists, all from Egypt, were arrested by officials. They were all found guilty for the murders and have been sentenced to death:
An Egyptian court Saturday condemned to death seven people for membership of the Islamic State group and over the beheading in Libya of 21 Christians, all but one of them from Egypt, judicial officials said.
IS in Libya posted a video on the internet in February 2015 of the gruesome beheadings on a Libyan beach, sparking international condemnation and Egyptian air strikes against jihadist targets in the neighbouring Arab state.
Of the seven defendants, three were sentenced to death in absentia, the officials said. An unspecified number of those condemned were accused of having taken part in the beheadings.
Death sentences in Egypt are subject to review by the country’s mufti as the official interpreter of Islamic law, although his verdict is not legally binding.
Prosecutors accused the seven suspects of membership of an IS cell in Marsa Matruh, northwest Egypt, and of planning attacks after having received military training at jihadist camps in Libya and Syria.
Rulings are to be issued on November 25 against 13 others on trial in the same case.
In May, Egypt again struck what it said were jihadist targets in Libya after IS claimed a massacre of Coptic Christians on their way to a monastery south of Cairo.
President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said military reverses for IS in war-torn Syria were driving its fighters to try to relocate to Libya and the Sinai Peninsula of eastern Egypt.
Egypt has been battling an insurgency by an IS affiliate based in North Sinai since the military’s ouster in 2013 of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.
Hundreds of members of Egypt’s security forces have been killed, while more than 100 Copts have died in church bombings since December. (source)
Last year we at Rescue Christians became aware of the case of Nadeem James, a Christian man who was arrested over false accusations he sent a ‘blasphemous text message.’ The problem is that James is illiterate- there is no way he could have sent a text message because he cannot read or write to being with. According to the latest development in the story, the court falsely pronounced him guilty and has sentenced him to die by hanging:
A Pakistani court has sentenced a Christian man to death after he was accused of texting a blasphemous poem to a Muslim friend through WhatsApp.
Nadeem James, who was arrested during the summer of 2016 and charged with the capital crime of insulting the Muslim prophet after a Muslim friend named Yasir Bashir complained to the police about an alleged message received through the mobile app, was officially sentenced to capital punishment last Thursday, according to his defense attorney.
James was charged under section 295-C of the Pakistani criminal code, which calls for those who insult Muhammad to be punished with death or life imprisonment.
“James was handed a death sentence by the court on Thursday on blasphemy charges,” James’ attorney, Anjum Wakeel, told AFP.
The lawyer added that James’ trial was held inside of prison because local Muslim clerics had threatened James and his family.
Wakeel vowed that James, who maintains that he was falsely accused of the crime because he married a Muslim woman who converted to Christianity, will appeal the sentence to the nation’s high court. Wakeel asserted that his client “has been framed.”
Wilson Chowdhry, chairman of the London-based humanitarian charity British Asian Christian Association, told The Christian Post on Monday that under Pakistani law, those who have been sentenced to death for blasphemy must wait at least five years before they can appeal.
“The frightening aspect of this case is that despite the safety of a trial in prison, a district magistrate has ruled that Nadeem, an obviously innocent man, is guilty. This provides little confidence that Nadeem can ever see justice in Pakistan and we all know what that sadly means,” Chowdhry said in a statement. “Nadeem James was an innocent man who fell in love with a local woman. After he married her, all he wanted was to settle down and have children, then to provide for them — all perfectly acceptable goals.”
James joins the likes of Christian mother Asia Bibi, who was also sentenced to death by hanging for alleged blasphemy in 2010 and recently nominated to receive the European Union’s prestigious Sakharov Prize.
“It’s become a palpable reality that [James] could be hanged, but it doesn’t [give much hope] to Asia Bibi either,” Chowdhry stated.
Bibi has been sitting in Pakistani prison for years. Although she requested an appeal last year, her appeal hearings have continued to be delayed by the nation’s Supreme Court.
“I don’t believe a Supreme Court judge is going to exonerate Asia Bibi,” Chowdhry told CP. “Any judge that would be brave enough to do that — it should be a responsibility of every judge — would in essence be facing his own death sentence in Pakistan because of the sheer intolerance and hatred towards minorities.”
“Her solicitor was calling for a hearing in April and it was rejected by the courts. Asia Bibi is sick. She is ill. She is coughing blood in prison. She is in a dingy cell and she is losing her sanity,” he continued.
“It may well be that courts are simply delaying things so that they don’t have to face the consequences in their country for exonerating Bibi, which would mean riots in every state, or they condemn Asia Bibi to death and face international scrutiny and animosity from the whole of the West who are watching with anticipation for her freedom.”
Pakistan ranks as the fourth worst country in the world when it comes to the persecution of Christians, according to Open Doors USA’s 2017 World Watch List.
One contributing factor to that ranking is the abuse of the country’s blasphemy laws by some Muslims looking to settle personal scores with religious minorities.
“Until this draconion law is removed from Pakistan, no Christian can feel safe. It is not abuse of the law that is the problem — it is the law itself,” Chowdhry said in a statement. “No man-made law is ever required to protect God. As Christians, we believe He is omnipotent. However, this seems a theological concept too difficult to decipher for Muslims in Pakistan, who continue to espouse blasphemy laws despite no basis in quranic scriptures.” (source)
Immediately after the incident was reported in the local media and at the local mosques, the fundamentalist Muslims gathered in the Christian colony known as Father’s Colony to intimidate the Christian community. Father’s Colony has about 50 Christian families living in the village; most of them fled, taking refuge with relatives in nearby villages. Local police tried to protect the Christian community from the Muslim lunatics who desired to burn down the Christian houses like they have done in the past in Badami Bagh and Gojra City.
When the blasphemy charges were instigated against Nadeem all the Christian NGOs only wished to report on the case, however none of them were willing to try and save the man from his fate. Only our team made the effort to save him from jail and torture. It is difficult but not impossible to save victims like these but Rescue Christians is the only organization to have been successful in the past. We have saved Ryan Stanton, Martha Bibi, Tariq Yousaf and many others that were in this dangerous situation. We believe in action and not just words.
One of our connections contacted our team leader and informed him that he had access to the Nadeem James and if our team would like to handle the case to try and save him from the clutches of the Pakistani “injustice system,” we agreed. Immediately after we approved the operation our team started making the relocation plan to get him out of Pakistan.
Meanwhile the Pakistani police intimidated the family of Nadeem James and they arrested both sisters-in-law of Nadeem. They were threatened with prosecution if they did not give up their brother. They were released the next day, they were not named in the FIR. We had already prepared a legal appeal against the forced dentation of the woman which turned out not to be necessary. The intimidation of the women worked and caused major issues for Nadeem and our team.
On the 12th of July as our team was finalizing the whole plan the brothers of Nadeem James and a pastor involved in the case contacted our people on the ground and forced them to return the Nadeem as they wished them to hand him over to the police. Initially we resisted but it was apparent that our people would be compromised and they themselves would become the hunted. We were shocked that Nadeem James own kin were willing to betray their own flesh and blood. The Blasphemy charge of 295 C, is the most serious of all blasphemy charges and carries the death sentence and is very difficult to get an acquittal.
We now have also established a serious problem for our organization as we had received information that the police were secretly observing the activity of our team regarding this case. Our lawyer in Pakistan was threatened with arrest for harboring a fugitive and now all our rescue team personel were in imminent danger. The betrayal of Nadeem by his own family also now seriously compromised our people. (source)
We at Rescue Christians do not take pride is saying that we were the only organization who actually tried to help him, not just report on his story. We say this to highlight the fact that there is a real problem with much of the organizations that promise to help Christians in Muslim nations. Many simply want to report on cases of persecution, do activism/lobbying, and maybe distribute some bibles. Rescue Christians is actually on the ground, with real people, helping out in real-life situations like that of Nadeem James.
The reason we do this is because our faith is as much spoken with our mouths as it is lived by our actions. It is easy to bemoan the problems of the world and talk about how they need to be fixed over catered dinners in expensive conference hall. It is a lot harder to go into the places where the persecution is actually taking place and help the people where they need to be helped.
It is also the reason why at Shoebat.com, we speak about other evils in addition to Islam, such as homosexuality and eugenics, because they are equally terrible and also necessary of discussion. Evil is evil in God’s eyes, and if we are even going to try to do our small part in the fight against it, we need to discuss all major evils of the day, not just those of our preference.
RescueChristians.org, a division of Forum For Middle East Understanding, is a non-profit charity (501c3 EIN# 75 321 4184) formed to do what the other “Rescue Missions” will not do: Get our hands dirty and risk our lives actually going in and rescuing persecuted Christians.
For more information please visit our site at: http://RescueChristians.org
To donate: http://rescuechristians.org/donate/
Keywords associated with our project:
Rescue Persecuted Christians,
Free the Christian Slaves,
Redeem Christians from Slavery
Rescue Christians is a charity founded in 2006. The initial mission was two-fold: to educate the public concerning the threat of fundamentalist Islam and terrorism, and to expose government corruption concerning the infiltration of Islamists into our government. This work continues.
In 2009, after a case of false Blasphemy was referred to us from Pakistan we inquired with many organizations that touted themselves as helping the persecuted Christians. After extensive research we discovered to our disappointment that none of these organizations had any interest in actually saving people from their fate. We decided that despite our lack of expertise at that time, it was our duty as Christians and Jews under the command of the Lord to undertake our best efforts to try and save as many Christian (and Jews if necessary) people as possible both from slavery and persecution.
In 6 years we have saved or helped over 12,000 people. In the last three years we have saved over 10,000 slaves which includes providing them new jobs and new places to live, literally changing their lives from persecution and abject poverty to people with a living wage and children who can now go to school.
We have done this with a tiny budget compared to other charities. Our tiny charity has helped more slaves in three years than the combined efforts of other “slave freeing” charities have done in the last 15 years.
The slave problem is huge with about 30 million slaves worldwide of which over three million are Christians. We believe if we can raise the resources we can save most of the Christian slaves and inspire other non-Christian organizations to save their own brethren. We have already inspired the Hindu community to do the same as us in Pakistan.
We employ brave people who risk their own lives to save their brethren and with the financial resources our readers and supporters provide that allows us to do this holy work. On many occasions we have serious security issues to deal with but thanks to G-d all our staff so far have avoided death or serious injury.
Our primary focus is to rescue people, get them out of danger or slavery and to safety. We avoid getting involved in food programs and social services. This is not because we dislike these programs it is because they cost so much money and because of our limited resources we cannot afford to help hundreds of thousands of people a month providing food and shelter. If we move large amounts of people to safety we partner with other larger organizations that can provide these services.
Ideally we like our rescued victims especially in the slave program to be able to get employment and be self-sustaining once they are released. Our charity retains its own private employment agency so once we release the slaves we can get them employed immediately. However in some cases we will provide on a short-term basis individual families food and shelter until permanent status has been achieved, this is usually the case when we deal with individual cases of extreme persecution.
Even if you are not wealthy you can help. For $87 you can save one slave and pay this over 12 months that is only $7.25 a month. To save one family costs about $500 that is only $40 per month. To save 10 families a year is about $5000, which is $400 a month.
We accept Credit Cards, Paypal, Checks or Wire.
Muslims apprehended a mentally challenged Christian teen after claiming he broke a tax-collecting box placed inside a shrine. The mob beat him severely and were going to burn him alive but the police intervened. In police custody, the man ‘confessed’ under ‘interrogation’ to ‘blasphemy’ by allegedly burning pages of the Koran. He is now in prison and may face the death penalty according to a recent report:
A legal aid group The Voice attended first court hearing of Asif Masih- a Christian teenager accused of committing blasphemy. Asif Masih appeared before the court, in order to face a trail over alleged blasphemy. Asif barely escape death, as an agitated mob tried to execute him for committing blasphemy by burning pages of Quran.
16-year-old, Asif Masih who is mentally challenged and an illiterate has been charged under section 295-B of the Pakistan Penal Code. His quandary began on August 12, 2017 when he was in the market purchasing household goods. Suddenly, Muhammad Nawaz also known as Majhoo, a local Muslim who sits at the shrine of a saint grabbed Asif and started yelling that the teen had broken a tax collecting box placed in a shrine.
Waheed Masih, uncle of Asif reveals: “As soon as a mob gathered, Majhoo incited them by saying that Asif had burned pages of a Quran, at which people started beating him up.” While he was being beaten, police arrived at the scene and hooked Asif. Police intervention saved Asif Masih from an extra judicial punishment for alleged blasphemy.
Agitated mob was furious to such an extent that they tried to snatch Asif from policemen and pull him out of the police van. “They were shouting that they wanted to kill him and burn his body. Realizing the pressure, the police called Alipur Chatta Police Station to send more policemen. Until they arrived, Asif was still being beaten up and, out of fear, confessed that he had burned the pages,” Waheed Masih stated.
Complaint Arshad Ali cleric of a local mosque, maintains in the First Investigation Report (FIR) that “at about 12.30pm, I was at the Pir Sandhay Shah shrine, along with Nawaz Matchi and Munawar Hassan, to offer prayers, when Asif entered the shrine, picked up the Quran, brought it out, poured kerosene oil on it and set it on fire.”
Asif Masih was forced to confess to have committing the crime, and is in police custody since his arrest. Despite the fact that there are inconsistencies in the evidence and lack of credible witnesses Asif Masih is still facing blasphemy charges. (source)
We have followed the long story of Fr. Tom Uzhunnalil, a Catholic priest who was taken hostage by Muslim terrorists in March 2016. As of the most recent report, he was close to death.
However, in a turn of good news, Fr. Tom has been finally rescued and is flying home to India according to a recent report:
The kidnapped Indian priest, Father Tom Uzhunnalil, has been freed from captivity and flown to Oman, the country’s government and church figures have confirmed.
Fr Tom was kidnapped in March 2016 when his care home in the Yemeni city of Aden came under attack. Four gunmen killed four Indian nuns, two Yemeni staff members, eight elderly residents and a security guard, while posing as relatives of one of the residents.
In May this year, an online video showed the priest in poor health, appealing for help. ‘My health condition is deteriorating quickly and I require hospitalisation as early as possible,’ he said.
Now the Omani government has reported that it has found and freed Fr Tom.
The Arab sultanate said in a statement: ‘In response to the Royal Orders of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said and as per a request from the Vatican to assist in the rescuing of a Vatican employee, the concerned authorities in the Sultanate, in coordination with the Yemeni authorities, have managed to find a Vatican government employee.
‘He was transferred this morning to Muscat in preparation for his return home.’
India’s Foreign Minister today tweeted confirmation of the release. Sushma Swaraj, who had insisted during recent months that the Indian government knew who was holding Fr Tom, tweeted: ‘I am happy to inform that Fr Tom Uzhunnalil has been rescued.’
Meanwhile, the Catholic Church in the UAE, Oman and Yemen issued a statement from the local Bishop Paul Hinder saying that he ‘is happy to inform that Fr Tom Uzhunnalil SDB, who was abducted during the attack on the Care Home run by the Missionaries of Charity in Aden, Yemen on 4th March 2016 has been released today. He is now is safe hands.
‘The Bishop thanks all those who were involved in the release efforts and all those all over the world who prayed unceasingly for the safe release of Fr Tom. More details are awaited and will be released as and when available.’
According to reports, Fr Tom will be flown back to Kerala in India later today.
He was reportedly set free after the intervention of the Oman foreign ministry.
A daily newspaper in the Gulf country, Oman Observer, reported that the priest thanked God as well as his brothers and sisters and all relatives and friends.
Cardinal Baselios Cleemis, the Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, told the Catholic news website Crux today: ‘God has answered our prayers. We thank the Government of India. The Honorable Minister of Foreign Affairs took personal interest in securing the release of Fr Tom.’
And Sister Mary Prema Pierick, the superior general of the Missionaries of Charity, said she was overwhelmed by the good news. (source)