Eritrea’s government increases pressure on Christians.

By November 4, 2005

Eritrea (MNN)–A coordinated raid in Eritrea a month ago netted the arrests of 200 Christians.

Voice of the Martyrs Canada’s Glenn Penner says they got word this week about what’s happening. “One of our contacts in Eritrea had reported that several detainees had in the past couple of weeks been released, including one pastor.”

He adds that several detainees had been reported released without charges “Of those that were imprisoned, all of the females have been released, and at least two males.”

The grim concern is for the others, Penner adds. “Most of them, however, are unknown. We simply don’t know where they are.”

Eritrea became the first country to have sanctions applied under the US religious freedom law. Penner says this kind of action can actually help Eritrean believers. “I think the world continues to need to know. I think believers need to continue to pray. Ultimately, the solution to this is not going to be from a human perspective, I think. It’s as God moves in the hearts of these Eritrean leaders to either change their policies, or perhaps they get a new set of leaders in Eritrea.”

Despite this open persecution, the government continues to support its statement issued in May 2003 that “no groups or persons are persecuted in Eritrea for their beliefs or religion.”

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