Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world.
In today's edition:
- LGBT, Occupy DC Groups Set to Protest National Prayer Breakfast
- U.S. Military: Taliban Set to Retake Power in Afghanistan
- Komen Charity Cuts Planned Parenthood Grants
- Iranian Christian Convert Sentenced to Two Years in Prison
LGBT, Occupy DC Groups Set to Protest National Prayer Breakfast
Two groups are scheduled to protest the annual National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, D.C., this morning -- GetEQUAL, a gay rights group and Occupy DC, the Christian Post reports. The National Prayer Breakfast, held on the first Thursday of every February, attracts top leaders, including the president, legislators, lobbyists and business executives. GetEQUAL said it would be protesting the event to raise awareness of LGBT "hate" and "persecution," and Occupy DC protesters said they would be there to object to the event's "exclusivity" and catering to the "1 percent." President Barack Obama is scheduled to attend this year's event, along with many members of Congress.
U.S. Military: Taliban Set to Retake Power in Afghanistan
According to Reuters, the U.S. military said in a secret report that the Taliban, backed by Pakistan, are set to retake control of Afghanistan after NATO withdraws its forces from the country. "Many Afghans are already bracing themselves for an eventual return of the Taliban," Britain's Times of London newspaper said today, quoting the "highly classified" leaked report. "Once ISAF [NATO-led forces] is no longer a factor, Taliban consider their victory inevitable." The report stated that Pakistan's security agency, Inter-Services Intelligence, was directly assisting the Taliban in attacks against foreign troops -- which Pakistan denies. According to the United Nations, violence in Afghanistan is at its worst since the Taliban were ousted by U.S.-backed forces in 2001, despite the presence of about 100,000 troops.
Komen Charity Cuts Planned Parenthood Grants
Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the nation's leading breast-cancer charity, announced this week it is cutting contributions to Planned Parenthood affiliates, OneNewsNow.com reports. "[This] kind of bullying [is] really hurtful," said Planned Parenthood's president, Cecile Richards, accusing Komen of bowing to pressure from pro-life groups. Komen said the decision was made because Planned Parenthood was under the threat of a congressional investigation, a probe launched by congressman Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) at the urging of pro-life organizations. Grants from Komen to Planned Parenthood totaled approximately $680,000 last year and $580,000 the year before, money Planned Parenthood says was used only for breast cancer screening and other breast health services; pro-life groups argue, however, that the grants freed up other funds for abortion-related services.
Iranian Christian Convert Sentenced to Two Years in Prison
A Christian convert who was arrested by security authorities in her home in July 2011 has been sentenced to two years in prison by Tehran's Revolutionary Court, ASSIST News Service reports. Leila Mohammadi, who was charged with "collaboration with foreign-dependent groups, broad anti-Islamic propaganda, deceiving citizens by formation of what is called a house church, insulting sacred figures and action against national security," already endured five months in solitary confinement in Iran's notorious Evin prison before being released on bail on Dec. 28. After the verdict was issued, her attorney announced the case was sent to the high court of Tehran to be reviewed, sources said.
Publication date: February 2, 2012