How long will it take before Western countries realize the severity of the situation for Christians in Sudan? That was one of the questions Sudanese Cardinal Gabriel Zubeir Wako had in his recent visit to England.
Criticizing western governments for failing to heed the Church’s warnings about the situation in Sudan, the archbishop of Khartoum said: “If I say that Christians are persecuted, that life is made difficult for us, how long is it going to take to get people to trust me? How many people realize that in speaking, I am putting my life at stake?”
The facade of peace in Sudan conceals the misery and injustice that continue to threaten the people, he said.
Even after this year’s peace agreement, there was very limited freedom of speech, that children were “brainwashed” at government-run schools, police and security had turned the country into a “security cage” and the Church was not allowed to own property, the cardinal said.
He went on to explain that non-Muslims were still under pressure to adhere to punitive Sharia law in the north of the country, that the government was pumping in resources to “islamize” the mainly non-Muslim south and that corruption and bad governance continued to threaten Sudan’s new-found and very fragile peace.
Speaking Sept. 24 to more than 300 benefactors at Aid to the Church in Need’s annual event at Westminster Cathedral, Cardinal Wako stressed the importance of adhering to the peace process, which follows 25 years of civil war between the north and the south of the country.