Friday, February fourteenth, the   UN says at least 22 people have been killed in a village in the Northwest region of Cameroon. Over half of those killed were children. No one has claimed responsibility for Friday’s incident but the opposition parties blame the killing on the government.

Sudan bishop appeals to U.S. government to intervene in trial of pastors facing death penalty

Sudanese Bishop Andudu Adam Elnail has called on the U.N. and the U.S. government to intervene and demand the release of pastors who are being tried for various offenses in Sudan. The pastors could be sentenced to death if they are found guilty.

Rev. Abdulraheem Kodi and Rev. Kuwa Shamal Abu Zumam were arrested last month along with Czech missionary Petr Jasek and human rights activist Abduelmoneim Abdulmwlla. The group is currently facing serious charges which include waging war against the state, espionage, provoking hatred among sects and spreading false information.

"We call for their protection and immediate release and urge that the U.N., U.S. government – including Congress – and other world communities demand the freedom of these two men of God and other prisoners," Elnail told Fox News.

Elnail, the bishop of Kadugli Diocese, fled Sudan five years ago and is now based in North Carolina. The authorities reportedly burned down his property after he turned down the option to endorse Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.

The bishop said that he has known Zumam for many years and added that the pastor is a "humble and good man."

"The government is not interested in the Christian religion. There is no freedom for us, we cannot build churches, we are treated as second-class citizens," Elnail said. "We need the international community to pressure the government of Sudan to give us our freedom of religion," he added.

Philip Tutu, a human rights advocate, believes that the pastors are targeted without proper cause. He added that the hearings for their trial have been repeatedly postponed.

"A lot of people are showing up for the hearings and not everyone is able to attend, including some attorneys for the pastors," said Tutu.

A spokesperson from the U.S. State Department has indicated that the officials of the U.S. Embassy in Khartoum are aware of the case of the pastors. The spokesperson added that the office is looking for opportunities to raise the issue of religious freedom to the government of South Sudan.

Sudan has been labeled as a "Country of Particular Concern" by the U.S. State Department in 1999. The Open Doors World Watch List ranks the country as the eight most difficult country to live in as a Christian.


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