The President of Sudan, known for his persecution of Christians, has been overthrown
Sudan's leader, Omar al-Bashir, who presided over the destruction of dozens of churches and the deaths of an estimated two and a half million people from religious and ethnic minorities, has been overthrown in a military coup.
A transitional military council will govern the country for the next two years. Although Sudan’s defence minister, General Awan Ibn Auf promised to hold elections, citizens are afraid of yet another oppressive military administration.
Miles Windsor of Middle East Concern says: “Whilst we can celebrate the removal of a major human rights violator from power, the reality that we have seen throughout the Middle East and North Africa is that when one regime is replaced, it doesn’t necessarily automatically lead to new democratic institutions, as we would recognise them.”
The military coup that has overthrown the president from his office happened on the 11th of April after a four-month-long period of peaceful protests. The Sudanese Professionals Association organised the demonstrations that were violently suppressed by the government and in which seventy innocent people lost their lives.
Bashir, an Islamist, used systematic violence and ethnic cleansing to impose Sharia law on Christians, leading to two million deaths and the secession of South Sudan. The International Criminal Court wants him for genocide in Darfur, where an estimated 500,000 civilians have died.
Bashir specifically targeted Christian converts from Islam for persecution. Christian communities in Sudan remain cautious about faith conversations with Sudanese Muslims because that could put them at risk of being arrested or intimidated.
For those serving as Gospel workers or church leaders, the events of the last couple of days are momentous. What’s ahead is unknown, but full of possibilities. Church leaders are asking for prayers so that: “calm will be restored soon in Sudan, that the Lord would protect his Church there, and that our brothers and sisters in Sudan would continue as a clear testimony in the midst of a crisis.”
Photo: The African Exponent