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anonymous Christian News to Note March 12, 2008 8:21 PM

Sri Lankan Pastor Gunned Down for Evangelical Work
The shooting is a stark reminder of the dangers Christians face in restricted nations. "There's somewhat of a perception that every Christian is as free as we are here in America. That is simply not true."
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anonymous  March 15, 2008 7:34 AM

Thank you Gerry for sharing with us! I am very glad that you posted this!

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anonymous  June 02, 2008 5:38 AM

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 April 11, 2010 6:04 AM

3/4/10 Christians’ Homes Burned in Bangladesh- Anti-Christian extremists burned down the homes of several Christian families in Bangladesh earlier this week, including the home of a Gospel for Asia-supported missionary. The Christians are now homeless as their homes and belongings were all completely destroyed in the attack. They covet your prayers.
 
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 April 12, 2010 9:13 AM

Dear Donna Matthews,
 map
Through ICC contacts in Nigeria we have learned that the recent massacre of Christians in the villages surrounding Jos was known of beforehand. The Governer of Plateau State warned the military commander for the region that violence was immanent, yet the General did nothing to prevent it.
 
Join us in urging the Nigerian government in holding this General accountable by relieving him of duty and prosecuting him for his failure to protect Nigerian citizens. This represents a clear opportunity for Nigeria to demonstrate a new path in dealing with religious violence.
 
Please follow the instructions below and have your signatures back to us by April 30.
 
Here's How You Can Help
 
#1 Pray: The first thing you can do to help is stop right now and ask the Lord to intervene in both these cases and others that are developing.
 
#2 Next, review our petition. You will find a more detailed account of the incident.
 
#3 Electronically sign the petition by clicking here.
 
#4 Print out the petition and take it to your friends and church and have everyone you know sign it. Send it back to us so we can send it to the Nigerian Foreign Minister.
 
Feel free to print out extra signature pages for large numbers of sign ups. When you have collected all your signatures, please mail the signature pages to:
 
ICC
PO Box 8056
Silver Spring, MD 20907
 
or fax them to us (301-585-5918).
 
Please get them back to us by April 30.
 
#5 Forward this email to all your email contacts and ask them to do the same.
 
Sincerely in Christ,
 
Jeff King
President, ICC
 
International Christian Concern
P.O. Box 8056
Silver Spring, MD 20907
Phone: (800) ICC-5441
Fax: (301) 585-5918
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 April 12, 2010 9:17 AM

Dear Donna Matthews,
 map
Through ICC contacts in Nigeria we have learned that the recent massacre of Christians in the villages surrounding Jos was known of beforehand. The Governer of Plateau State warned the military commander for the region that violence was immanent, yet the General did nothing to prevent it.
 
Join us in urging the Nigerian government in holding this General accountable by relieving him of duty and prosecuting him for his failure to protect Nigerian citizens. This represents a clear opportunity for Nigeria to demonstrate a new path in dealing with religious violence.
 
Please follow the instructions below and have your signatures back to us by April 30.
 
Here's How You Can Help
 
#1 Pray: The first thing you can do to help is stop right now and ask the Lord to intervene in both these cases and others that are developing.
 
#2 Next, review our petition. You will find a more detailed account of the incident.
 
#3 Electronically sign the petition by clicking here.
 
#4 Print out the petition and take it to your friends and church and have everyone you know sign it. Send it back to us so we can send it to the Nigerian Foreign Minister.
 
Feel free to print out extra signature pages for large numbers of sign ups. When you have collected all your signatures, please mail the signature pages to:
 
ICC
PO Box 8056
Silver Spring, MD 20907
 
or fax them to us (301-585-5918).
 
Please get them back to us by April 30.
 
#5 Forward this email to all your email contacts and ask them to do the same.
 
Sincerely in Christ,
 
Jeff King
President, ICC
 
International Christian Concern
P.O. Box 8056
Silver Spring, MD 20907
Phone: (800) ICC-5441
Fax: (301) 585-5918
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 April 12, 2010 7:51 PM

Man Gets 8 Years of Labor for Entering N. Korea

Reports suggest the man met with and was inspired by Robert Park.


Sarah Pulliam Bailey

An American has been sentenced to eight years of hard labor and fined $700,000 for entering North Korea.

Reports suggest that Aijalon Mahli Gomes, 30, who had taught English in South Korea, was inspired by Robert Park, a Christian who walked into North Korea from China on Christmas day to "proclaim Christ's love and forgiveness" and call for leader Kim Jong Il to step down. Park was released in February without charge. The Associated Press reports that Gomes attended rallies in Seoul in support of Park, and Gomes was arrested one month after Park entered North Korea.

Former colleagues told the AFP that Gomeswas a deeply religious person. "He acted like an evangelist. He took the trouble to commute to Seoul to participate in Wednesday prayer sessions at a foreigners' church there," a teacher said. Senator John Kerry has called for his release, the Boston Globe reports.

Professor Sung-Yoon Lee, a North Korean expert at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, said he viewed the huge fine for Gomes as a “signal that North Korea is willing to negotiate and get some money for releasing Mr. Gomes.’’

“A lot of North Korea watchers may criticize this foolhardy, risky move by Park and Gomes because it raises thorny issues of having to pay ransom or make some kind of concession,’’ Lee said.

“But people like Gomes and Park embody a powerful human presence — the willingness to take a great risk and sacrifice themselves. . . . I think this kind of daring move will come to be viewed as, if not heroic, then certainly courageous in the long run,’’ Lee added.

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 April 19, 2010 4:07 AM

WASHINGTON – In a case that pits nondiscrimination policies against freedom of religion, the Supreme Court is grappling with whether universities and colleges can deny official recognition to Christian student groups that refuse to let non-Christians and gays join.

The high court was to hear arguments Monday from the Christian Legal Society at the University of California's Hastings College of the Law. The Christian group said its constitutional freedoms of speech, religion and association were violated when it was denied recognition as a student group by the San Francisco-based school.

The group has made this argument at several universities around the nation with mixed results. The high court's decision could set a national standard for universities and colleges to follow when Christian and other groups that want to exclude certain people apply for money and recognition from the school.

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 April 21, 2010 5:34 AM

Update on Alimujiang Yimiti

On March 16, The People's High Court of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region rejected an appeal from Uyghur house-church leader Alimujiang Yimiti, according to ChinaAid Association. In October 2009, Alimujiang was sentenced to 15 years in prison for "providing state secrets to overseas organizations." Please send a letter of encouragement to Alimujiang, letting him know you are praying for him. Also pray for his persecutors. Tell your friends about Christians suffering in China, and encourage them to pray for and write to Alimujiang. Your letters can result in shorter prison sentences for those accused. Write to Alimujiang and encourage our Chinese brother.




More Info...

Alimujiang Yimiti
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 April 21, 2010 8:05 PM

April 21, 2010

Dear Donna

Prayer for Secret Believers and Churches in Tunisia

Across Tunisia, satellite television has become quite popular, even common.  Nearly all homes have a radio and a television; most have a satellite dish too. These are powerful tools that allow the message of Jesus to be brought into hearts and homes.

Tunisian (Arabic) language programs began a few years ago, with a few people responding in faith. Today the programming has grown and encompasses a broad range of purposes, from explanation and testimony, to teaching and discipling. However in a culture where being different or expressing uniqueness is looked down upon; many decisions for Christ are being made in secret. But for others who have newly accepted Christ, and through the presence of the Holy Spirit, are able to discover one another and worship together. Praise God for His work in Tunisia! 

Father, we praise and thank You for those in Tunisia who have heard Your Word through the media. We ask that You would strengthen those believers, despite the risks involved, and protect them as well as those who work in the program ministry. We also pray for those who have responded in faith, that they will connect with local fellowships. Please continue to have the media reach every village and home, so that all can be touched by the gospel. 

Continued Prayer for Maryam and Marzieh

We have been praying for two Iranian Christian women, Maryam and Marzieh, who were in prison for their faith and then released last November. Last week they again were in court facing charges that could have sent them back to prison for life, or even worse, the death penalty. We have since learned that they were not detained and that their court process will take a few more days...we ask for your continued prayers.

Father, we know You are in control. We pray again that You would set Maryam and Marzieh free from all charges set against them, and comfort them with Your abundant peace. Please continue to heal their illnesses and pain, and bind their hearts with Yours as they wait for the outcome of their court hearing.

Prayer for North Korea during North Korea Freedom Week

Last week we gave the opportunity and challenge to seek God and cry out to him on behalf of our brothers and sisters facing extreme persecution in North Korea.  

So far, more than 33 individuals have signed up to hold prayer vigils during North Korea Freedom Week (April 25- May 1) in their church or home, including Christians in Kenya, Romania, Australia and other countries worldwide. In addition over 1,450 people have visited the Open Doors website and written messages which will be translated and then sent by radio into North Korea.

It is not too late to participate. You can either organize a prayer event or send a letter of encouragement. Visit the

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 April 28, 2010 10:29 AM

April 28, 2010

Dear Donna
  
‘Pinpricks’ of Truth Making Way into North Korea

As refugees from North Korea and activists from Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) gather in Seoul, South Korea this week to highlight human rights violations in the hermit kingdom, there are signs that North Korean citizens are accessing more truth than was previously thought. A recent survey by the Peterson Institute found that a startling 60 percent of North Koreans now have access to information outside of government propaganda.

Kim Seung Min of Free North Korea Radio said in a press statement, “North Koreans are increasingly finding out that their misery is a direct result of the Kim Jong-Il regime, not South Korea and America.” The radio station broadcasts into the country for five hours a day, adding to information gleamed by refugees and merchants who cross the border regularly to buy Chinese goods.

The radio station is a partner in the North Korea Freedom Coalition (NKFC), which is holding its annual North Korea Freedom Week events this week in Seoul. “We set out to double the radio listenership of 8 or 9 percent,” said NKFC Co-Chair Suzanne Scholte. She described the flow of information as “pinpricks in a dark veil over North Korea... Now those pinpricks are becoming huge holes.” Scholte adds, “This is a spiritual conflict as well as a physical one – some people didn’t want us to call it freedom week. But we’re making a statement … God gives us freedom by the very nature of being human and North Koreans are entitled to that too.” Read the full story from Compass News.

Father, we praise and thank You for the fantastic news of more information entering into North Korea. We give You the glory for this. We pray for the North Korea Freedom Coalition to accomplish its goals, and ask that You would continue to open up the hearts and minds of those who don’t know the Gospel, and put in them an understanding of the true freedom found in Christ.

Buddhist Extremists in Bangladesh Beat & Take Christians Captive

Urgent Call to Prayer:
Since April 16th, Buddhist members of an armed rebel group and their sympathizers are holding three tribal Christians captive in a pagoda in Bangladesh after severely beating them in an attempt to force them to return to Buddhism. They are to be kept in the pagoda for 15 to 20 days as punishment for having left the Buddhist religion, according to Christian sources.

Father, we pray for those held captive: Pastor Shushil Jibon Talukder, Bimol Kanti Chakma, and Laksmi Bilas Chakma. We ask that they will not be shaken in their turmoil, but instead encouraged by Your Holy Spirit to stand firm in their faith. We ask that You would intervene and give them strength and perseverance as they suffer for Your Name. Give the rebel group an awakening, and let them see the Truth shine through their captives. 

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 April 29, 2010 7:28 PM

DON'T FORGET THE RIGHT TO WORSHIP FREELY: Open Doors USA President, Dr. Carl Moeller and Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein, Director of Interfaith Affairs for the Simon Wiesenthal Center co-wrote this op-ed published in the Washington Times. It highlights the importance of promoting international religious freedom in U.S. foreign policy and the need for President Obama to appoint a qualified Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom.  Read Article>>

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 April 29, 2010 7:32 PM

MULTI-FAITH LETTER TO PRESIDENT OBAMA: Late last month a diverse group of NGOs and faith groups including Open Doors USA sent President Obama a letter encouraging him to appoint the Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom. This letter also stressed the importance of elevating the Ambassador’s position to give him/her the original standing intended by the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act.   [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 April 29, 2010 7:36 PM

  As a member of the North Korea Freedom Coalition (NKFC), Open Doors USA has actively participated in North Korea Freedom Week (NKFW) events including organizing lobbying activities for this important week.  This year is unique in that NKFW will be held in Seoul instead of in Washington, DC during the last week of April. The purpose of the week is to promote the freedom, human rights, and dignity of the North Korean people. Open Doors USA is asking our supporters to participate in the “Letters from America” program in which they can submit brief messages to be translated and  broadcast into North Korea by Free North Korea Radio, the premier independent radio station broadcasting into North Korea. OD USA is also helping to coordinate prayer events across the country for North Korea and has launched a social media campaign to create awareness of the lack of religious freedom within the country. View opportunities for participation>>  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 April 29, 2010 7:40 PM

STANDING WITH THE SUFFERING: Open Doors President, Dr. Carl Moeller describes the rise of Islamic extremism within Nigeria and how this is affecting Nigerian Christians. Dr. Moeller also provides insight regarding how we should respond to the increasing violence against Christians.  Read Article>>

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 April 30, 2010 7:32 AM

India Hindu Militants Attack Evangelical Christians
Christians around the world meet so much resistance from all sides just trying to worship God and spread the Word. We have to remember the strength that our faith provides us and that solidarity as Christians can move mountains. This story is a perfect example of this.
 
The church in central India was able to celebrate Easter despiteHindu Militant harassment from Hindu militants and the local police. The Apostolic Christian Assemblies in Madhya Pradesh was accused of forcefully converting Hindus to Christianity by Dharma Sena, a hard line Hindu group.
 
At least 36 members of Dharma Sena broke into Palm Sunday services chanting Hindu slogans. The police soon followed and arrested Pastor Francis Xavier two associate pastors and four church members.

"Prior to the attack, the area Dharma Sena leader Yogesh Agarwal filed a police complaint against the Christian of conversion activities" and "then marched towards the church with about 35 Dharam Sena members" to carry out the attack.


After the pastor's arrest, approximately 100 Christians marched to the police station carrying banners that said "Masih Shakti Samiti", or "People with Christ's power." The police eventually relented and released Pastor Xavier and the others after admitting that "the allegations against them were false and baseless."
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 May 05, 2010 8:12 AM

May 5, 2010

Dear Donna
 

Stand with our Brothers and Sisters in Nigeria

As we have heard in the last few months, many Nigerian Christians (including several women and children) have faced horrific persecution and death in Jos, Nigeria. In the face of these atrocities, we need to stand with our brothers and sisters in Nigeria and hold the government accountable for failing to protect Christians. Please send a message to the UN Nigerian Ambassador today, asking that the Nigerian government launch a thorough investigation of these incidents, hold the perpetrators to account for their involvement in these crimes, and ensure that the victims receive compensation for the crimes committed against them.

Open Doors workers have reported that many Nigerian villagers have been left with nothing and lack the basic necessities of food and shelter. Since the attacks begun Open Doors, due to generous support, have been able to provide assistance in meeting urgent basic needs as well as trauma counseling and spiritual guidance. Use your voice today in this critical petition and let them know they are not forgotten and that we, as a body of Christ, are standing with them.

Father, we pray steadfastly that You would put a stop to the extreme violence taking place in Nigeria. Protect the Christians who are struggling to survive, and may Your Holy Spirit comfort them in their weariness and hardship. And, as we join forces in petitioning the Nigerian Ambassador, we ask that you provide a way for Your justice and peace to reign in this troubled nation.

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 May 05, 2010 7:55 PM

Update Prayer Report-
Authorities in Xinjiang Province recently moved Uyghur Christian Alimjan Yimit from a prison in Kashgar to a prison in the provincial capital Urumqi, and allowed the first visit from family members since his arrest in January 2008, according to Compass sources. Praise God!

Alimjan pastored a Uyghur ethnic house church in Xinjiang prior to his arrest in January 2008. While the initial charges against Alimjan were both “instigating separatism” and “leaking state secrets” to foreign organizations, his actual offense was talking to visiting Christians from the United States. The Kashgar Intermediate Court found Alimjan guilty of “leaking state secrets” on Oct. 27, 2009 and gave him a 15-year sentence. Alimjan was noticeably thinner but in good spirits, the family reported. Officials have now granted Alimjan’s wife Gulnur and other close family members permission to visit him once a month.

Father, we thank and praise You for the visits that Alimjan can have from his family. We know that You are sustaining him during his time in prison, and we ask that You would continue to strengthen his faith daily. We also ask that You give the lawyers wisdom as they work to reduce Alimjan’s sentence. May You be glorified in his situation, and may he and his family trust You through it. 

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 February 17, 2011 2:59 PM

On Feb 9, Chinese Christian bookstore owner Shi Weihan was released from prison. Our prayers have been answered. Praise God!
Read More

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 February 25, 2011 4:48 AM

DOES CONTACTING YOUR U.S. LEGISLATORS MAKE A DIFFERENCE FOR PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS? Recently published data reveals that citizens have more power than they realize. The report states “The most influential advocacy strategies for swaying an undecided Member of Congress depend on personal communications from constituents.”  I hope this encourages you that your efforts to speak out for Persecuted Christians DO MAKE a DIFFERENCE.  Another finding is that form letters are not nearly as influential to Members as personalized messages

Open Doors provides form letters for our advocacy campaigns as we do not expect our supporters to know all the details of each bill, resolution, or letter we support.  If you have limited time, sending the form message is better than not taking action.  BUT…if you really want to maximize your impact for persecuted Christians, please take a few extra minutes to personalize the message before you send to your legislator. This is done by simply clicking in the message box and adding or editing the form letter. The easiest way to personalize the message is to explain at the beginning of the letter why you care about the issue. You can leave the remainder of the form message if you so desire.  Read report to learn how you can be a more effective advocate>>

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 September 28, 2011 5:08 AM


 

Annual Report on International Religious Freedom Released: The United States Department of State released its Annual Report on Intl. Religious Freedom on September 13th. These reports provide valuable information about the state of religious freedom worldwide. The State Department designated the same Countries of Particular Concern (CPCs) as they have in the past which are: Burma, North Korea, Eritrea, Iran, China, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Uzbekistan. US Commission on Intl. Religious Freedom Chair, Leonard Leo, stated that the State Department’s current list of “Countries of Particular Concern” (CPCs) has some glaring omissions such as Pakistan, Vietnam, Egypt, Iraq, Nigeria and Turkmenistan. He has urged Secretary Clinton to consider adding these countries to the list. Read more at>>  

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 September 28, 2011 5:11 AM

H.R. 2867 Passes the House:  Thank you for contacting your representative regarding this important issue (in its former version H.R. 1856) which authorizes continued funding of the International Religious Freedom Act and authorizes continued funding of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF).  After passing the house, the bill was received in the Senate and sent to the Committee on Foreign Relations. We are hopeful that the Senate will vote on this bill before they recess which could happen any day now.  The funding for this important office will expire at the end of September so it is critical that this vote takes place. The USCIRF is the only such government commission of its kind in the world; it publishes annual reports on religious freedom violations and provides accountability to the State Department on this issue. To see how your representative voted on H.R. 2867 go to>>

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 September 28, 2011 5:24 AM

Advocate for Algerian Christians: Thanks to everyone who has taken action on behalf of Christians in Algeria! Open Doors supporters have sent almost 2,900 messages to the Algerian Ambassador asking him to discuss with his government protecting religious freedom for Christians in his country.To learn more about this campaign and to take action go to>>   [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 September 28, 2011 7:43 PM

Prayer Alert:
 
Iranian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani Facing Execution in Next 24 Hours 
Dear Donna Matthews,  

We are asking for your urgent prayer for Youcef Nadarkhani, an Iranian pastor who may be executed within the next 24 hours if he continues to refuse to recant his faith in court. 

 

Youcef is the pastor of a house church in Rasht, Iran, and was arrested in October 2009 for opposing the education practice that forces non-Muslim students to read the Quran in school. Youcef had argued that the Iranian constitution permits children to be raised in their parents' faith; however, for defying Iranian authorities, Youcef was charged with apostasy.

 

Iranian officials used pressure tactics during Youcef's imprisonment as an attempt to coerce him to renounce his Christian beliefs, which included arresting his wife and threatening to seize his children. Still, Youcef remained firm in his faith, refusing to deny the name of his Savior Jesus Christ.

 

On September 22, 2010, Youcef was issued the death sentence for his conversion to Christianity and for encouraging the conversions of other Muslims. Youcef appealed the decision to the Supreme Court of Iran, claiming he had never been a Muslim and therefore could not be found guilty of apostasy. However, a written verdict upholding the death penalty and ordering an investigation was handed down on June 12. A reexamination of the case to determine whether Nadarkhani will live or die began on Sunday and has continued for the past two days. Early this morning, Youcef refused to deny his faith for the fourth time in court. Technically, he must only be granted three opportunities to return to Islam before he can be executed for apostasy.

 

Throughout his imprisonment, Youcef has trusted in the Lord and has been a bold witness of the redeeming work of Christ in his life. Remember, Jesus did not merely warn His followers that they might be persecuted; He promised it, saying, "If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you... If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you," (John 15:18-20). 

 

Youcef has learned to delight in hardships and persecution for Christ's sake (2 Cor. 12:10). "Many attempt to flee from their spiritual tests... [but] no one will be victorious by escaping from them, but with patience and humility he will be able to overcome all the tests and gain victory," he wrote from Lakan Prison last June. "Although heaven and earth will fade, His word will still remain."

 

 

Sincerely in Christ,

 

Jeff King
President, ICC

International Christian Concern
2020 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
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 October 26, 2011 7:41 AM

Advocate for Algerian Christians: Thanks to everyone who has taken action on behalf of Christians in Algeria! Open Doors supporters have sent just under 3000 messages to the Algerian Ambassador asking him to discuss with his government protecting religious freedom for Christians in his country.To learn more about this campaign and to take action go to>>    [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 October 28, 2011 12:42 PM

Libyan Christians Keeping Low Profile after Gadhafi's Death
For 42 years Moammar Gadhafi ruled Libya with an iron fist. With his death last week, his regime finally came to an end. What does his death mean for Libyan Christians?
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 October 28, 2011 12:51 PM

Christian Mother of Five in Nigeria Killed
What began as a soccer match at a school ended in violence and the death of Charity Augustine Agbo, a Christian mother of five. The fighting then spread from the school to other parts of the city where other Muslims reportedly joined the Muslim students, attacking Christians and setting their homes ablaze.
Read More

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