Sudan returns closed church building

KHARTOUM, Sudan — Authorities have handed back a church building they had padlocked four years ago, according to Christian leaders in Khartoum.

A Sudanese church leader involved in the return of the Khartoum Christian Center building, owned by the Sudan Pentecostal Church, told Morning Star News that officials returned the building to them in June. Government officials had closed the church, which had served as a worship venue for 20 years, in August 2014. The closure was said to be temporary but church members feared the government would sell it. Church leaders say Sudan has designated at least 25 church buildings for destruction in its campaign to rid the country of Christianity. The government gave no reason for returning the property to the church.

Because of its treatment of Christians and other human rights violations, Sudan has been designated a Country of Particular Concern by the U.S. State Department since 1999.

Sudan ranked fourth on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2018 World Watch List of countries where Christians face most persecution. (MS)