01/30/2013 Sudan (AN) –Three South Sudanese took an airline flight out of Sudan after authorities ordered them to leave the country because of their Christian activities - the latest in a rash of expulsions as the Islamic regime rids the nation of Christianity, sources said.
According to a story by Morning Star News, dozens of foreign Christians have been ordered to leave the country in the past two months, and many others have fled to Kenya as authorities have stepped up pressure by denying visa renewals and by other means, the sources said. The three Christians ordered to leave the country on Jan. 28 had been jailed earlier this month.
Sudan's Ministry of Interior, in conjunction with the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS), ordered a South Sudanese couple, Anthony and Cecilia Jamu, and a pastor also from South Sudan, Ismail Bashir, to leave the country within 24 hours, sources said.
Morning Star News reported that accused of aiding Sudanese churches, Cecilia Jamu was arrested when she was linked with an associate from Germany, Jasmin Neuman, who was deported on Jan. 7.
For many years Neuman had cared for children in Omdurman (opposite Khartoum on the River Nile) who had taken refuge from conflict in Darfur.
After Cecilia Jamu's arrest, Morning Star News reported the sources said, her husband was also later jailed, leaving their children to be cared for by friends. The government incarcerated Pastor Bashir also on Jan. 7 for his involvement with a Christian radio station owned by Sudmedia, they said. The government suspected the radio station had ties with a Korean pastor, Kang Bomjin, who along with his wife Sune Kang had been deported on Dec. 10 because of their Christian activities.
Morning Star News said before his deportation, Bomjin owned a farm that Sudan's intelligence service confiscated, forcing him to sell his cows, sheep and other animals at throw-away prices, sources said. The pastor received no compensation for the land.
Another foreign Christian, Ronald Ssemuwemba of Uganda, had been living on Bomjin's land. Also accused of engaging in Christian activities, Sudanese authorities early this month arrested and beat Ssemuwemba after linking him with Christian organizations - confiscating his passport, laptop and cell phone before ordering him to leave the country, sources said.
According to Morning Star News, Ssemuwemba, who had lived in Sudan for five years on a student visa, went into hiding with friends until he was found and deported on Jan. 5.
"The Christian atmosphere in Sudan is alarming and frightening," said a Christian source in Khartoum. "This crackdown at the moment for foreigners who are suspected to be Christians in the country is alarming."
Morning Star News reported a Kenyan government source said that many foreign church workers, especially Western Caucasians, have been leaving Sudan on short notice at a high rate, with most of those going initially to Kenya.
Harassment, violence and arrests of Christians have reportedly intensified since the secession of South Sudan in July 2011, when Bashir vowed to adopt a stricter version of sharia (Islamic law) and recognize only Islamic culture and the Arabic language.
According to Morning Star News, South Sudanese have been ordered to leave the country following the new republic's secession, but thousands are reportedly stranded in the north due to loss of jobs, poverty, transportation limitations and ethnic and tribal conflict in South Sudan. South Sudanese Christians in Sudan have faced increased hostilities due to their ethnic origins - though thousands have little or no ties to South Sudan - and their faith(Source).