Sunday, September 20, 2009

Somali Christian Martyred in Merca, Somalia

By BosNewsLife Africa Service with additional reporting by BosNewsLife's Stefan J. Bos

MOGADISHU, SOMALIA (BosNewsLife)-- Islamic militants have shot and killed a long-time underground Christian in Somalia after finding Bibles in his possession, BosNewsLife learned Sunday, September 20.

Well-informed Christian news agency Compass Direct News said 69-year-old Omar Khalafe was killed by al-Shabab fighters Tuesday, September 15, at a check-point near the port city of Merca, 70 kilometers (45 miles) from the capital Mogadishu.

Shalafe carried 25 Somali Bibles he hoped to deliver to an underground congregation, Christians said. "By 10:30 a.m. he had arrived at the checkpoint controlled by al Shabab, a rebel group linked with al Qaeda that has taken over large parts of the war-torn country," said Compass Direct News, which has close contacts with Christians in the region.

The news agency cited a source as saying that "the passengers were ordered to disembark from the bus for inspection."

"The Islamic militants found 25 Somali Bibles in one of the passengers' bags; when they asked to whom the Bibles belonged, the passengers responded with a chilled silence. The militants found several photos in the bag and saw that the elderly Khalafe resembled a face in one of them," source was quoted as saying, speaking on condition of anonymity because of security concerns.

"They asked Khalafe if he was the owner of the Bibles; he kept quiet. They shot him to death," the source said.


Al-Shabab, has campaigned to establish Sharia, or Islamic law, throughout Somalia and to topple the government. Shalafe's was the latest in a series of incidents against the Christian minority in the lawless nation, BosNewsLife established.

Last month, the group killed 41-year-old Ahmed Matan in the Bulahawa area, near the Somali border with Kenya, for converting from Islam to Christianity, several Christian sources told BosNewsLife earlier.

In July al-Shabab militants beheaded four Christian aid workers for refusing to renounce their faith in Christ.

Fatima Sultan, Ali Ma'ow, Sheik Mohammed Abdi and Maaddey Diil after kidnapping them on July 27 near in Merca, Christian advocacy groups said.

It has become increasingly difficult for international peacekeepers to prevent these attacks.


On Thursday, September 17, at least 21 African Union troops, including the mission's deputy commander, were reportedly killed in suicide bombings at military headquarters at Mogadishu airport.

Al Shabab said it had carried out the attack "to avenge the death" of one of its leaders.

The rebel Islamic group has also threatened neighboring Djibouti that a similar fate awaits its troops should they be sent to Somalia.

The country has been without an effective central government since President Siad Barre was overthrown in 1991.

Years of fighting between rival warlords and an inability to deal with famine and disease in Somalia are believed to have led to the deaths of up to one million people.


Bri said...

Thank you for helping spread the stories of persecuted Christians in Somalia.I'll be praying for Omar Khalafe's family and friends. God's plan is such a mystery...I'm sure Khalafe had been in dangerous situations before and been spared. But obviously it was his time to be with Jesus. I look forward to following your blog

Stacy aka Fahiima said...

Walaal Ilaah ha ku naxariisto. Qof qaali ah ayaad tahay. Dadkaaga Soomaali ah aad baan ugu jeclahay. Waan ku garab jooga.

It is a fundamental human right that Somalis be able to choose their own faith.

mustafe said...

waa mahad santihiin dhamaan masiixi yiinta dhamaan meshee joogaan ba waxaa u du ceysiin dhamaan dadka jooga somalia oo masiixi ah rabigeen ciise in uu la jiro waana caawinaa in ta somalia joogta oo masiixi ah rabigeyna wuu i caawin

Harun Hassan said...

I praise the Lord for this man's faith. God has fulfilled His purpose for this soldier, for God's purpose is always fulfilled. No Somali Christian dies before his or her appointed time. God has appointed the time when all people will die, and not a day can be taken or given beyond God's appointed decree.

The sovereignty of God should be an encouragement to Somali Christians.

I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted. (Job 42:2)

Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand. (Proverbs 19:21)

Al-Shabaab and others hope to kill all the Somali Christians, but the purpose of the Lord will stand, not the plans of men. May the Lord continue to build and strengthen His church in Somalia. We can sow and water, but only God can give the increase. All glory to God!

Anonymous said...

As a muslim minority in the US I know first hand how it feel to be looked as an infidel. The problem is that few muslims like me believe in freedom of religion. I hope this doesn't happen to anybody else. Mojority of the muslim population in the world condem these act against humanity.

Somali Cristian Community in Sweden said...

i am name is Ali Iam broud to be cristian then I want to contact all somali cristian to unity