Sudan: Pastors Can be Charged with Crimes Punishable by Death

Monday, July 6, 2015

By Joseph DeCaro, worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) - A judge in Sudan ruled yesterday that there was enough evidence to charge two South Sudanese pastors with crimes that carry the death penalty.

According to Morning Star News, Reverends Yat Michael and Peter Yein Reith were arrested by the state in response to their support of a Khartoum church whose property was the object of a government-assisted take-over. Both clerics are now facing the following charges under the Sudanese Penal Code:

Spying (Article 53) and undermining the constitutional system (Article 50) are both punishable by death, life imprisonment, or prison and the confiscation of property.

Lesser charges include blasphemy (Article 125), punishable by one year of imprisonment, or a fine, or no more than 40 lashes and the disturbance of the public peace (Article 69), which is punishable by six months of prison, or a fine, or no more than 20 lashes.

Since 2012 Sudan has expelled foreign Christians and bulldozed church buildings on the pretext that they belonged to South Sudanese citizens.

Due to its terrible 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 also ranked sixth on Open Doors' 2015 World Watch List of 50 countries where Christians meet the most persecution.