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Growing concern for Christians in Nepal following 4th church arson attack

by Eno Adeogun

The attacks, which began on 9th May, targeted Mahima Church in Dhangadhi, Emmanuel Church in Kanchanpur and Emmanuel Church Budor in Doti, Western Nepal. Hebron Church in Panchthar, Eastern Nepal was also targeted. 

While no-one was killed in the attacks, Christian charity Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) has voiced their worry that the developments show an increase in hostilities towards Christian groups in Nepal.

Steven Selvaraj, CSW's South Asia team leader told Premier why he was surprised by the attacks.

"Nepal has been a Hindu monarchy for well over 200 years and had actually moved to a more secular democratic Republic," he said during Premier's News Hour.

In a joint press release on 14th May, the National Christian Fellowship of Nepal (NCFN) and Nepal Christian Society (NCS) condemned the attacks and stated that Christians are falsely being accused of conversion, leading to legal prosecution.

CSW's Chief Executive Mervyn Thomas echoed these words and said: "We are incredibly concerned that these attacks represent a stark decline in the ability of Christians in Nepal to practice their faith.

"We urge the Nepalese government, as a newly appointed member of the United Nations Human Rights Council, to bring the perpetrators of these crimes to justice, as well as uphold its commitment to promote and protect human rights, including the freedom of religion or belief, both in Nepal and around the world."

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