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All articles in category International

News

December 2020
News > International

Poland: Court’s abortion ruling protects disabled unborn babies

Poland’s highest court has ruled that abortions on the grounds of disability will no longer be permitted. The Constitutional Tribunal ruled that the current law is unconstitutional. It is under this law that 98 percent of the country’s abortions are carried out, including for conditions such as Down’s syndrome. Once the court’s decision comes…

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December 2020
News > International

Pakistan: Reports of ‘extreme’ persecution against Christians

Advocacy organisations have warned against rising threat levels against Christians in Pakistan, highlighting the continued use of highly contentious blasphemy laws and institutionalised aggression. Open Doors has branded the persecution level in the country – which is the fifth-largest by population – as ‘extreme’. In its 2020 World Watch List, it cited ‘dozens of…

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November 2020
News > International

Nigeria & China: Still major concern for Release International

Nigeria and China remain major concerns in 2020 for Release International, according to its latest report. The Christian advocacy organisation cited rising Islamist terrorism in Nigeria and neighbouring countries as a significant cause for ‘alarm’, with Christians increasingly in danger because of their professed faith. In its annual accounts, Release reported, ‘The persecution of…

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November 2020
News > International

France: Court rules against ‘mother’ name for man

France’s highest court has ruled that a man who lives as if he is a woman cannot be listed as the mother of his child. The Cour de Cassation overturned a 2018 ruling which gave the 51-year-old man the new status of ‘biological parent’ for his now six-year-old child. He had asked to be…

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November 2020
News > International

US: Mark Dever’s church sues local officials in Washington DC

A prominent evangelical church in Washington, D.C., has filed a lawsuit against the District of Columbia over restrictions on worship gatherings. The legal action, taken by Capitol Hill Baptist Church, claims that the District’s administration is violating its First Amendment rights by openly tolerating mass protests while prohibiting worship services of more than 100…

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November 2020
News > International

Vietnam: Pastor released after four years in prison

A Vietnamese pastor has been released after four years of imprisonment, advocacy organisation Alliance Defending Freemdom International has revealed. Pastor A Dao was imprisoned for his faith in 2016 after attending the Southeast Asia Freedom of Religion or Belief Conference. The leader of the Montagnard Evangelical Church of Christ had presented a talk at…

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November 2020
News > International

Russia: Draft bill aims to curb foreign-trained pastors

Lawmakers in Russia are proposing a bill to restrict foreign-trained pastors from preaching. Commentators warn it could deal a ‘powerful blow’ to religious freedom in the country. In September, the bill on freedom of conscience and religious association amending federal law was expected to be passed by the State Duma. The original date of…

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November 2020
News > International

Iran: Research suggests big surge in number of Christians to one million

Fresh research has revealed the rapid growth of the church in Iran, with Iranian Christians now thought to number around one million. The study was conducted by The Group for Analyzing and Measuring Attitudes in Iran (GAMAAN). The Netherlands-based research group seeks to access the opinions of Iranians on sensitive issues that cannot be…

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October 2020
News > International

Finland: Third interrogation for former interior minister

Päivi Räsänen, former minister of the interior and serving member of the Finnish Parliament, has faced her third police interrogation in recent months. The investigation against Räsänen started in June 2019, when she directed a tweet at the leadership of her church denomination and questioned its official sponsorship of the LGBT event ‘Pride 2019’.…

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October 2020
News > International

Kazakhstan: pastors appeal to president over church land

Two pastors in Kazakhstan have appealed directly to the country’s president asking him to stop local authorities seizing the land on which their churches stand. City authorities in the capital Nur-Sultan (formerly Astana) have ordered the confiscation of the Grace Presbyterian Church building and the Agape Pentecostal Church building, which was under construction on…

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October 2020
News > International

Lebanon: Christians offer help to Beirut explosion victims

Lebanese Christians have driven efforts to help families and communities affected by the dockyard explosion in Beirut in August. One church relief project has helped scores of needy families to receive comfort as well as clean-up and repair assistance. A team leader reported, ‘Although Beirut’s explosion was so big that it has affected hundreds…

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October 2020
News > International

US: Court injunction against MacArthur’s church

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge has granted a preliminary injunction prohibiting Grace Community Church in Sun Valley from holding indoor services. The church, led by its pastor John Macarthur, has been holding full worship services for several weeks in defiance of lockdown rules. The court ruling said that Grace Community Church should follow…

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