Indonesia Faces Defining Moment in ‘Blasphemy’ Protests against Christian Governor Ahok

Islamic-majority ‘model democracy’ challenged by religious-based political furor.

(Morning Star News) – Having concluded their investigations, Indonesian police have now named Jakarta’s ethnic Chinese Christian Gov. Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama a suspect in a blasphemy case. The case that has produced virulent protests will now to go trial. Islamic fundamentalists are now demanding he be arrested and incarcerated, as is normally the case with […]




Dangerous Area in Kaduna, Nigeria a Virtual Ghost Town; 13 More Deaths Discovered

Shocked survivors of attacks say they had no conflicts with herdsmen.

DOGON FILI, Nigeria (Morning Star News) – Several people advised me that it was not safe to go to Godogodo in southern Kaduna state, but it was imperative to verify reports of violence against Christians in Nigeria, as authorities and mainstream media downplay persecution as “sectarian violence.” I was advised that if I must go, I […]




Persecution of Church in China to Escalate as Zhejiang Experiment Goes National

Draft regulations on religion portend broader clamp-down.

(Morning Star News) – In October 2012, the South China Morning Post ran a series of articles on China’s looming leadership transition. One line might prove prophetic, although not in the way intended: “For clues about how China’s leader-in-waiting Xi Jinping might manage the world’s second-largest economy, Zhejiang Province is a good place to start looking.” […]




Night

A new news service to shed light amid vast darkness.

(Morning Star News) As Morning Star News enters its fifth year of publication, and in memory of Elie Wiesel, who died on July 2, the editorial that inaugurated the news service website in 2012 is here republished. At times some Jewish friends, astonished, cannot help asking me how Christians can be so indifferent toward religiously […]




House-Church Leader among Four Pro-Democracy Activists Sentenced in China

Hu Shigen given seven and a half years in prison.

(Morning Star News) – Two Christians were among four activists convicted under fabricated charges of “subverting state power” in China last week. The Tianjin No. 2 Intermediate People’s Court sentenced house-church leader Hu Shigen, 61, on Wednesday (Aug. 3) to seven and a half years in prison on charges of “subverting state power” for his […]




Converts from Islam in Malaysia Detained in ‘Faith Purification Centers’

Violators of sharia sentenced – or arbitrarily sent – to re-education camps.

(Morning Star News) – Converts to non-Islamic faiths in Malaysia can be detained for more than three months in “Faith Purification Centers.” While some converts are arbitrarily arrested and sent to the centers, detention in one of the three camps is “slowly gaining preference among sharia judges in Malaysia” as an alternative to prison sentencing, […]




Persecuted Rights Advocates in Vietnam Seek Help from World’s Democracies

Beatings, prison also constitute an attack on liberty.

(Morning Star News) – In 2006, the U.S. State Department removed Vietnam from its list of Countries of Particular Concern, citing the release of religious prisoners and the easing of religious restrictions. Two months later, the United States granted Vietnam permanent normal trade status, paving the way for Vietnam to join the World Trade Organization […]




‘Accident’ Kills Evangelical Pastor, New Christian in Vietnam

Wife of pastor, church elder critically injured.

VINH, Vietnam (Morning Star News) – On the evening of May 5, pastor Dang Ba Nham, his wife, and a church elder were praying on a roadside with a woman who had recently converted to Christianity in this city on the north central coast of Vietnam. They stood in front of the property of the new […]




Christians in Burma Patiently Endure Building of Pagodas on Church Lands

Buddhist monk said to be using structures for religious, political aims.

YANGON, Burma (Morning Star News) – Striving for a peaceful legacy, Christians in Burma (also called Myanmar) are choosing to patiently endure an influential Buddhist monk’s campaign to build pagodas on church properties. Initially social media and news media registered an outcry from Christians when U Thuzana, a powerful monk better known as Myaing Kyee Ngu […]




Christian Lawyer in Malaysia Loses Appeal to Practice in Sharia Courts

Muslims who wish to change their religion must use Muslim attorneys.

(Morning Star News) – Victoria Jayaseele Martin yesterday lost her appeal to represent clients in Malaysia’s sharia (Islamic law) courts. Why would a Christian lawyer want to practice in an Islamic court? In Malaysia all ethnic Malays are Muslim, according to the constitution. Because of a number of affirmative action privileges for Malays, any ethnic […]