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Eritrea Protest Vigil Marks 10th Anniversary of Church Closures

  • Religion Today
    Religious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
  • 2012 May 17
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Representatives of seven organizations from the UK and Ireland will take part in a protest vigil outside the Eritrean embassy in London today to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Eritrean government's closure of every church except those belonging to the Orthodox, Catholic and Lutheran denominations and the beginning of an era of mass detentions of Eritrean Christians, Christian Solidarity Worldwide reports. The vigil will be followed by an evening of prayer for the thousands of Eritrean Christians currently being held without charge or trial in inhumane conditions in detention centers throughout the country. Eritrea is one of the world's most repressive regimes, often likened to North Korea. The regime demands total allegiance, and Christians are perceived as a threat to national unity. On May 15, 2002, all denominations except Orthodox, Catholic and Lutheran were banned, and the government began its mass arrests of Christians, particularly singling out evangelical and charismatic churches.