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The 2006 law requires non-Muslim worship buildings to be licensed, but all applications to do so have remained unattended. “We all know that these laws are only there to muzzle Christians and other religious minorities”.
Police use force to eject Christians resisting in protest. The closures this week bring to 15 the number of worship buildings sealed since the government launched a campaign againt churches.
The place of worship in the city of Boghni was used by two Protestant communities. Around 380 members are affected.
Algerian authorities have engaged in a systematic campaign to close Christian places of worship and other Christian institutions since November 2017.
“Many more churches are threatened with closure, amid denial of formal registration and recognition by authorities”, the World Evangelical Alliance says in a statement.
Congregation initially refuses to leave. “The assembly finally yielded and agreed to leave the premises, but with much pain”, Pastor Takilt said.
Thousands of New Testaments will be distributed this summer by volunteers at the border ports in Southern Spain.
Separately, another judge fines owner of land where church was meeting in a tent.
Citing a law that requires authorization for non-Muslim places of worship, authorities in North-central Algeria ordered the closure of the church and its Bible school.
The Pope congratulated Morocco for what he considers to be a good coexistence between Muslims and Christians. The country ranks 35th in the World Watch List.
Embracing a theology of ‘unity in diversity’.