A military group in Myanmar has detained ethnic minority Wa and Lahu Christians and ordered them to pledge that they will not pray in churches but only in their homes, Catholic news agency UCAN reports.
One hundred Wa Christians, who signed a statement giving a guarantee, have since been released, according to Rev. Lazarus, general secretary of the Lahu Baptist Convention in Kyaing Tong. Ninety-two Lahu Christians are reportedly still being detained by the United Wa State Army (UWSA), Myanmar's largest ethnic army.
Rev. Lazarus told UCAN that his convention had sent a letter to UWSA but had not yet received a reply.
"Christians will face more restrictions and be closely monitored by the United Wa State Army, so the situation is worrisome," he said.
Since Sept. 13, the army has destroyed churches in the region, announcing that the ones built after 1992 were illegally constructed. It has also banned the construction of new churches and religious teaching in schools in the Wa region.
Meanwhile, the United Nations has decided to end international protection for predominantly Christian Chin ethnic communities who have been displaced, Premier Radio reports. In June, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) announced that the documentation of the Chin people who had fled to other countries would not be automatically renewed from January 2020, which means they would have to return home.
However, the Chin Human Rights Organization (CHRO) called the decision "premature" as the ethnic group could "still suffer from systematic human rights abuses" in Myanmar.
"Chin people living in present-day Myanmar continue to face institutionalized barriers to religious freedom," said the organization's report. According to CHRO, the Chin community "continues to be threatened" from bodies including the country's military. The ethnic group, the report says, is not allowed to acquire land for Christian worship and faces mob violence "often supported and even organized by local authorities and Buddhist monks" The challenges they meet include poor access to education and under-developed infrastructure.
World Watch Monitor recently told the story of a pastor from the Chin minority who explained the discrimination a Christian can meet on a daily basis in Myanmar. Tun left his town in Chin state and moved his family to another area to pastor a small group of Christians in a predominantly Buddhist village. His name and voice have been changed on the video to protect him.
To contact us or to submit an article, click here.
Get Charisma's best content delivered right to your inbox! Never miss a big news story again. Click here to subscribe to the Charisma News newsletter.
Five ways to deepen your relationship with God, increase your faith and save money!
- Deepen Your Relationship with God with a FREE eCourse: Click Here to view all of our free e-Courses. Favorite topics include Fear, Forgiveness, Holy Spirit, Supernatural, and How to Hear God.
- Super Discounts and Close-Out Specials: Click Here to view all our bundles and close-out specials and save up to 86%! Prayer, Holy Spirit, Anointing, the Supernatural and more.
- God Wants to Anoint Women Now: Rise up and enter the anointing of Deborah, Anna, Esther, Ruth and Hannah. You were called to go higher. Click Here to learn more.
- Change Your Atmosphere and Circumstances Through Prayer! John Eckhardt's prayer bundle gives you six powerful books to help you pray and change any situation. Click Here.
- HUGE Bible Sale!: Click Here to save up to 50% off a great selection of Bibles. Plus, get a free gift with each order!
Attention Pastors and Leaders: Leadership training and development are crucial for success. Enroll in a FREE 1-hour leadership mini-course by Dr. Mark Rutland. View Details