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ICC Note:
After Sudan split into Sudan and South Sudan in July 2011, Christians living in Sudan have faced increased levels of persecution. In Sudan, Christians only make up a very small percentage of the population and are discriminated against by both the government and fundamentalists within Sudan’s Muslim majority. After the split, Sudan’s president declared his intention to create a 100% Islamic Sudan. Since then, Christians have faced increased persecution, leading many to flee to South Sudan with the help of Christian aid organizations.
8/19/2013 Sudan (Christian News Network) – Following increased persecution in northern Africa, a major Christian organization has announced plans to evacuate over 3,000 Christians from Sudan in coming months.
Since South Sudan seceded from its northern counterpart two years ago, Christians in Sudan have suffered under heavy persecution from the predominantly Islamic culture, where Sharia law is enforced. Demographic data suggests that 97-98% of Sudan’s population is Muslim, and Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir declared last year that he desired “a 1oo% Islamic constitution, without communism or secularism or Western [influences].”
As previously reported, the U.S. Department of State identified Sudan as a “country of particular concern” in its most recent International Religious Freedom Report, which was released in late May. The report explains that the Countries of Particular Concern are nations which display “particularly severe, … systematic, ongoing, egregious violations of religious freedom.”
“The [Sudanese] government at times enforced laws against blasphemy and defaming Islam,” the Department of State report details. “Authorities harassed religious practitioners of unregistered groups and limited the freedom of the four registered religious groups. There were instances of abuse and mistreatment. … State governments and local authorities razed two churches.”
A description of Sudan by the Barnabas Fund—a Christian organization which strives to “support Christians where they are in a minority and suffer discrimination, oppression and persecution as a consequence of their faith”—echoes similar concerns over religious freedom violations in the north African nation.
“Since the mainly Christian South Sudan gained independence in July 2011, Christians and churches in Sudan have faced increasing aggression,” the Barnabas Fund reports. “They already endured discrimination and many restrictions, but now church leaders have been threatened, arrested and abducted, and Christian buildings destroyed.”

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