Even after 21 years of independence, Christians in the small nation of Eritrea face tremendous suffering and persecution.
According to Christian Today more than 1,000 Christians are imprisoned because of their faith. Most are behind bars because they are members of underground churches.
Members of underground churches report that there are more than 1,000 Christians in prison for their faith.
Release Eritrea, a human rights organization launched in response to the gross religious rights abuse in the country that strategically borders the Red Sea, reports that some Christian leaders have been in prison ranging from three to ten years.
"We praise God when we hear reports of their resolute faith and good spirit,” a church leader said. “We trust God to safeguard them, but times are tough for their families, their elderly parents are dying and the young children they left behind are now coming of age fatherless.”
A former Italian colony, the militarized nation of Eritrea is split between Christian Tigrinyans and a number of Muslim tribes. The nation is known to be highly restrictive in regards to religion for both Christians and Muslims.
Reuters reports that the U.N. Human Rights Council will examine Eritrea’s forced labor program that is producing human rights violations and driving a massive refugee exodus.
Publication date: May 29, 2014