Barnabas Fund - International Headquarters River Street, Pewsey, Wilthire. Phone: +44 1672 565030 Latitude: 51 deg 23 min 18 sec N Longitude: 1 deg 45 min 48 sec W .
Tortured, beaten, raped, kidnapped, impr...

Email:

Tortured, beaten, raped, kidnapped, imprisoned: Eritrean Christian refugees in Egypt need your help

To

Email address:
Separate multiple addresses with a comma (,). Maximum of 10

From

Your name:
Your email address:
Security test:
Please enter the numbers that appear here in the box below.
refresh captcha
CAPTCHA Image
Security code:

Details provided here will never be used in any other context

Tortured, beaten, raped, kidnapped, imprisoned: Eritrean Christian refugees in Egypt need your help

Project(s): 12-954

Country/Region: Eritrea, Middle East and North Africa, Egypt

Barnabas Fund is helping Eritrean Christian refugees who have fled the brutal regime of their homeland to Egypt where hundreds are in prison or taken hostage for ransom, and subjected to torture, beatings and sexual assault.

Eritrean_Grave_in_Egypt_4X3.jpg
Burial place of murdered Eritrean Christian refugee in Egypt

They risk their lives escaping Eritrea, which can be regarded as the second worst place in the world to be a Christian, after North Korea. Christians, particularly evangelicals, are tortured and imprisoned in notoriously horrendous conditions for their faith; they are viewed as a threat to national unity because they give their ultimate allegiance to God and not to the state.

Those who manage to escape often flee to Egypt, where hundreds of refugees arrive every month, with the aim of crossing its border into Israel. Channel Four’s Unreported World highlighted the desperate plight of Eritrean refugees on Friday (3 June). The programme, “Breaking into Israel”, exposed how they are forced to put themselves in the hands of people-smugglers and make the arduous 900-mile journey across the Sinai desert. Some die along the way; others are shot dead as they attempt to cross the Egypt-Israel border; and those who are caught are sent home to almost certain torture and death.

The programme is available to watch online here. It is being repeated at 2.20am (British Summer Time) in the early hours of Friday morning (10 June).

Imprisoned or held hostage

The majority of Eritrean refugees are Christians. Many end up in Egyptian prisons or being held hostage for ransom by Bedouin Muslim nomads, who work with the traffickers, in the deserts of Sinai. There are currently around 500-600 Eritrean prisoners in Egyptian custody and an estimated 100-200 in the hands of traffickers, who have been less restricted in their criminal activities since the Egyptian revolution in January. The hostage-takers are now demanding up to US$20,000 per person for their release; if their families don’t pay, the hostage is killed and there are unconfirmed reports that the captors are turning to forced organ harvesting, especially if the ransom is not paid. Unwary Eritreans are also being kidnapped from UN refugee camps in Sudan.

The refugees suffer inhumane treatment, including rape, sexual harassment, torture, beatings and slavery at the hands of the Egyptian authorities or the Bedouin gangs. Those in prison are denied medical care, suffer malnutrition as a result of meagre daily rations such as a piece of bread and a tomato, and have restricted access to visitors. Christians receive more severe treatment than Muslim prisoners because of their faith. Some have consequently adopted common Muslim names in an effort to alleviate their suffering.

Barnabas is helping

Barnabas Fund is supporting Christian refugees from Eritrea in Egypt. Our grant is being used to provide medicine and basic necessities such as food, clothes and sanitary products for prisoners including children; medical expenses, such as for a woman with kidney failure; and legal costs to secure the release of some of the most vulnerable prisoners such as women with children or those with health problems. With the help of Barnabas Fund, three people have recently been released, and legal fees have been paid to the prison so that 23 prisoners can be seen and registered by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

Four women who were abandoned in a seriously injured state by traffickers in the Sinai desert following a car accident are also receiving support for medical treatment and food. A fifth member of their group had sadly died of her injuries.

Our project partners said:

The reason why Eritreans are being abused... is varied but almost always involves the fact that they are predominantly of Christian belief... The situation on the ground is expected to keep on deteriorating while the number of refugees is increasing.

Towards the end of 2010, an Eritrean governor ordered an “end of year purge” against Christians; the number of refugees in Egypt is growing as the danger intensifies.

Dr Patrick Sookhdeo, International Director of Barnabas Fund, said:

The suffering of our brothers and sisters from Eritrea is unimaginable. They are in great danger from their government, which is one of the most severe persecutors of Christians in the world, and if they flee in the hope of a better life elsewhere, they face imprisonment, kidnap, torture, rape, beatings and even death. They desperately need our help today.

Give Today

If you would like to help Eritrean Christian refugees in Egypt, please send your donation to project 12-954 (Eritrean refugees in Egypt). Please click to donate online using our secure server.

If you prefer to telephone, dial: 0800 587 4006 from within the UK or +44 1672 565031 from outside the UK. Please quote project reference 12-954 (Eritrean refugees in Egypt).

If you prefer to send a cheque by post: Click this link for the address of our regional office. Please quote project reference 12-954 (Eritrean refugees in Egypt).

For a quick donation of £3.00 by SMS (see terms and conditions here) text Barnabas/954 to 70007 (Please note: This facility is presently only available to UK supporters).

Please Pray:
  • That the Eritrean government will cease to regard Christians as a threat, so that they will not be forced to flee their homeland into dangerous situations in other countries.
  • That the Egyptian authorities will exert themselves to safeguard the human rights of the Eritrean Christians and ensure their safety and protection as they travel through Egypt.
  • For our brothers and sisters in prison or captivity, that they will know the Lord’s presence and peace with them and will soon be set free.
  • For full healing of the physical and emotional wounds suffered by the four women in the car accident; one of them has brain damage and amnesia.
Help us: Share this article

Email:

Tortured, beaten, raped, kidnapped, imprisoned: Eritrean Christian refugees in Egypt need your help

To

Email address:
Separate multiple addresses with a comma (,). Maximum of 10

From

Your name:
Your email address:
Security test:
Please enter the numbers that appear here in the box below.
refresh captcha
CAPTCHA Image
Security code:

Details provided here will never be used in any other context

christian, persecution, charity, church, persecuted, sookhdeo, Islam

Other articles

Follow Barnabas

or

receive news & appeal emails as they are published

From Twitter

From Twitter_icon
  • Young Christian man killed by Muslim co-worker in Pakistan for refusing to convert to Islam http://ow.ly/w1Uum 23 hours ago

  • Christians driven out of Maaloula by Islamist rebels long to return after its recapture by the Syrian army http://ow.ly/vTrgN Thu, Apr 2014 16:37

  • Islamic parties make unexpected gains in Indonesian elections http://ow.ly/vR60m Wed, Apr 2014 16:46

  • Former counter-terrorism chief to lead inquiry into alleged Islamist takeover of Birmingham schools http://ow.ly/vOn9I Tue, Apr 2014 17:01

Daily prayer

Daily prayer_icon
  • Pray for Barnabas Fund partners in South Sudan who have been supporting Christians forced from their homes by violence. Conflict between supporters of President Salva Kiir and his sacked deputy Riek Machar in December and January displaced around 860,000 people. Churches were burned down and a number of pastors killed, while many people lost their belongings and were left destitute. Give thanks that churches in and around the capital, Juba, were able to provide food and other essentials to many families with help from Barnabas. Pray that they may continue to be salt and light in their country at this unstable time (Matthew 5:13-16), and that it will soon be safe for displaced Christians to return home. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed 14 hours ago

  • Pray for the residents of a mainly Christian village in Borno state, Northern Nigeria, in the aftermath of a horrific attack by Boko Haram militants on 15 February. Ask for God’s comfort for the relatives and friends of the 106 people in Izghe who were gunned down and slaughtered in their houses or in the open as they tried to flee. Pray for strength for the numerous residents who were wounded or whose properties were looted and torched. Pray too for the many Christians who fled into the neighbouring state after the attack, and ask that the Christian community in the North of Nigeria will be preserved in the face of Islamist violence. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Tue, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Violent attacks by militants from the Islamist group Boko Haram continue unabated in Northern Nigeria. On one horrendous day of violence on 26 January, at least 138 people were killed. A church in Wada Chakawa village in Adamawa state was targeted; the attackers locked the congregation inside and then detonated bombs, shooting and cutting the throats of people who tried to escape. They then went on a four-hour rampage in the village. Later the same day, Kawuri village in neighbouring Borno state was burned to the ground. Boko Haram is fighting to establish an Islamic state, and Christians are among its main targets. Pray that the Nigerian authorities will succeed in containing its insurgency. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Mon, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we give You thanks on this Easter Day for the living hope that You have given us and all Your people through the resurrection of Jesus from the dead (1 Peter 1:3). We pray that the prospect of an enduring inheritance and future salvation will encourage our persecuted brothers and sisters to persevere in their faith, whatever may happen to them. We pray that we too may be sustained by this hope in the sufferings that we experience for the sake of Christ. We ask that the joy and resurrection power of the Lord will give strength and peace to persecuted believers today and every day. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sun, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Give thanks for the Christ-like responses of Christian leaders in CAR to the crisis that threatens them and their churches. They have distanced themselves from the anti-balaka militias, saying that these should not be labelled as Christian and that they hold no mandate from the churches. The leaders have also condemned the violence in the country, whatever its origin, and have called on Christians to pursue forgiveness, reconciliation and healing. Churches are hiding, defending and caring for thousands of Muslims endangered by the anti-balaka, and one of CAR’s most senior church leaders has invited the president of the country’s Islamic community to move into his church compound. Pray that this powerful witness to the grace and love of Christ will help to bring peace to the shattered country. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sat, Apr 2014 00:00

© Barnabas Fund 1997 - 2014 All rights reserved.
Barnabas Fund & Barnabas Aid are registered trade marks