(MNN) — On July 19, 2008, a Muslim mob attacked and stoned two Christians who
were attending a church meeting in the town of Jijiga,
in eastern Ethiopia.
"They were confronted by nine Muslims who were yelling
anti-Christian slogans and started hurling stones at the Christians," said
Jonathan Racho, Regional Manager for Africa
for International Christian Concern.
One of the two Christians, a leader in the church, was
struck by eight stones and suffered a concussion as well as injuries on his torso. He was admitted to Karamara hospital and
The other Christian escaped without injury. As he ran toward the police station, the mob
dispersed, but the police never responded to the situation.
Although the majority of Ethiopians are Christians, Wahhabi
Islam is growing rapidly in some regions of the country, like eastern Ethiopia. In fact, the radical brand of Islam is
growing faster than Christianity in Ethiopia, according to
"Wahhabi Islam is spreading very fast in Ethiopia, and it's being sponsored by countries
such as Saudi Arabia.
They are teaching intolerance against
Christians and other non-Muslims," Racho said. "So there is a very strong atmosphere of hostility against Christians in
many parts of Ethiopia
where there are many Muslims living."
Jijiga is the capital of the Somali Regional
State, one of nine
Ethiopian states. Most of the state's
inhabitants are Muslim, including most of the residents of Jijiga.
"Unless the growth of radical Islam is curbed in Ethiopia, the
attacks against Christians will continue to rise," Racho said. "Ethiopian government officials, particularly
local officials in Muslim-dominated areas of the country, should be made
accountable for failing to protect Christians against such attacks."
Racho said Christians can contact the Ethiopian embassy in Washington D.C.
to pressure the Ethiopian government to protect Christians from
persecution. Click here to find the
embassy's contact information.
Racho also urges Christians to pray for the Ethiopian
"I call upon Christians in the United
States and in other countries to pray for the continuous
growth of church in Ethiopia,"
he said. "Please also pray that the Lord
will protect Ethiopian Christians from the increasing persecution and hostility