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27 April 2011
Four Ethiopian Muslims Beat Evangelist to Death, Assault His Pregnant Wife
Washington -- International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that on April 21 four Muslims beat an evangelist to death and assaulted his pregnant wife in Worabe, Ethiopia, an area that is 97% Muslim.
The Muslims lured Evangelist Abraham Abera from Kale Hiwot Church, his home and place of ministry, at 9:30 p.m. They told him that his friend was sick and needed his immediate attention. Abraham left with the men; they turned on him and began to beat him with rods. The minister's wife, Birtukan, saw the men attack her husband and ran to intervene, but the Muslims beat her as well.
Abraham died on the spot and his wife, who sustained a severe head injury, was left unconscious in the street. She was found and taken to a hospital in Butajira, where she regained consciousness on April 22nd and was able to recount the details of the attack. Birtukan spoke with an ICC source and said that she knew two of the attackers. She said that as the Muslims were beating her and her husband, they told them, "You (Christians) are growing in number in our area. You are spreading your message (the gospel). We will destroy you."
Though Birtukan did suffer injuries to her mid-section, her unborn baby did fortunately survive the attack.
The attackers still remain at large. A Christian leader in the area told ICC that the men may not be arrested because the local officials are also Muslims. "Christians in Worabe and its surrounding areas are persecuted at the hands of Muslim radicals, and the local government officials, who are Muslims, don't protect Christians. We urge the higher government authorities [state and federal officials] to intervene and protect us," said the Christian leader.
"The brutal killing of Evangelist Abraham and the beating of his wife, Birtukan, is deeply troubling. We urge the federal government authorities to investigate this latest attack as well as reports of persecution against Christians in the Silte zone," said Jonathan Racho, ICC's Regional Manager for Africa.
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