The USCIRF Releases a Religious Minority Update for Bangladesh

Christian people pray during a sunrise prayer by Dhaka Pastors Fellowship on Easter Sunday in Dhaka, Bangladesh, April 12, 2009. | (Photo: Reuters/Andrew Biraj)

The USCIRF updates Americans on the ways Bangladesh mistreats Christians and other religious minorities.

Last month, we reported on the United States Commission On International Religious Freedom’s (USCIRF) annual report. Now the USCIRF has released a country update on Bangladesh.

Vincent Michael of FMI says, “The report is kind of briefing us as Americans about the situation. According to the report, there were four reasons why The USCIRF felt they needed to release this information. The first was the Vested Property Act . . . then the Digital Security Act was number two. Then they listed the rise of religious extremism. Fourth, they listed challenges posed by local law enforcement.”

The Vested Property Act

Michael says this act stems from a long history of conflict between Hindus and Muslims. Pakistan and Bangladesh both have majority Muslim populations, and both have laws allowing the seizure of property from religious minorities.

Michael explains how this relates to Christians. “Christians kind of get caught in the middle. This piece of legislation, whenever it was first formed, had Hindus in mind. But because Christians are neither Hindus nor Muslims, they sort of get lumped in with the rest of the minorities. You can see this legislation used against Christians as an excuse to grab churches and land that people feel is valuable.”

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SOURCE: Mission Network News, Kevin Zeller

CALL TO ACTION

  • Pray that religious freedom would abound in Bangladesh.
  • Ask God to strengthen his people in Bangladesh, and that their witness to the Gospel would bring many more to Christ.

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