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Anglican Church calls for Afghan Christian to be freed

Today the Anglican Church in North America joined with millions of Christians and other people of good will in calling upon the U.S. and Afghan governments and the international community to intervene on behalf of Said Musa, an Afghan Christian convert from Islam, now in prison for his faith in Jesus Christ.

Musa, the father of six, had worked for the International Committee of the Red Cross for fifteen years in Kabul, Afghanistan, at the time of his arrest. He was arrested on May 31 along with as many as 25 other former Muslims. The arrests were part of a crackdown on Christian converts after footage of a baptismal service was aired on national television.

Since that time he has been held in prison where he has not been informed of any charges against him, nor provided with legal counsel. Sources report that Musa has been beaten and tortured on a daily basis. Some reports have indicated that he has sustained physical and sexual abuse from other prisoners and Afghan prison officials. In a plea for help, Musa revealed how he had been tortured and sexually abused in prison, saying, “The authority and prisoners in jail did many bad behavior with me about my faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. For example, they did sexual things with me, beat me by wood, by hands, by legs, put some things on my head, mocked me ‘he’s Jesus Christ’, spat on me, nobody let me for sleep night and day.” Musa appealed to Christians everywhere to come to his aid, “Please, please, for the sake of Lord Jesus Christ help me.”

Musa is due to stand trial this week. It is likely that he will be charged with apostasy from Islam. If convicted, he could be sentenced to death under Sharia Islamic law.

Archbishop Robert Duncan of the Anglican Church in North America called upon the Afghan government to free Musa immediately. “Said Musa must be released as a matter of urgency. He has committed no crime and must be given the freedom to follow Christ,” said Archbishop Duncan. He also appealed to members of the Anglican Church to pray for Said Musa and all Afghan Christians. He offered the following prayer for anyone who wanted to support Said Musa and the Afghan Church:

“Almighty God, whose will it is that all people may worship freely. Grant your grace to Said Musa and all Christians who are under pressure in Afghanistan. Strengthen your Church, that even those who are under pressure may be salt to the earth and light to the world. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.”

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