Worthy Christian News » Christian Persecution » Christians facing 'elimination' on Indonesian island of Ambon
JAKARTA, Indonesia (BP)--Twenty-three Christians were massacred in Indonesia as they fled from their village in late July and early August, The Hindustan Times of India has reported. The report from Indonesia was relayed to U.S. media via Crosswalk.com, an Internet news and information site.
Christians are under threat of extermination by thousands of Jihad troops that have entered from outside the region, according to Newsroom, an online publication also cited by Crosswalk.com. The troops have announced over loudspeakers that they will kill all Christians who remain after July 31, Ambon church leaders told U.S. church workers.
The killings were the latest Muslim-Christian violence that has swept the Malukus Islands since January 1999, leaving about 4,000 dead, according to Crosswalk.com's assessment of news reports.
Muslim assailants killed the latest victims as they tried to escape into the jungles of the Indonesian island of Ambon, a Christian activist told The Hindustan Times.
Jihad fighters are preparing lists of Christian leaders for "elimination," a churchwoman who declined to be named for fear of reprisal told Ecumenical News International. About 90 percent of the Christians in Ambon have fled as mortar fire and bomb attacks continue, according to Newsroom.
More than 15,000 refugees are waiting along the piers of Halong naval base to board any ship out of Ambon, and many more are at other ports under Christian control. The refugees have been described as "wet, hungry, inadequately clothed, suffering from all kinds of illnesses and intimidated in their spirits," Newsroom reported.
According to an e-mail circulated July 28 quoting a Baptist pastor in Indonesia:
"The Laskar Jihad [Banner of Holy War] command has openly announced through loudspeakers that [they and the Indonesia Military] will exterminate all Christians in Ambon. All inhabitants who wish to survive have been given an ultimatum to leave the city before July 31. However, escape routes are quickly closing for those who are desperately trying to flee, while the attack against the city of Ambon, using mortar fire and bombs, is continuing unabated.
"Already 90 percent of the Christians have fled to the mountains, and now the attackers are advancing toward the mountains. More than 15,000 refugees are waiting along the piers of Halong naval base for their turn to board any ship leaving Ambon. Many more are waiting at other seaside areas that are in Christian control. However, at this time of the year, with the sea waves reaching six to eight meters, and the ships in constant danger of being fired upon, escape itself is very risky.
"The refugees are wet (this being the rainy season in Ambon), hungry, inadequately clothed, suffering from all kinds of illnesses and intimidated in their spirits," said the pastor, whose description is likely the one circulated by Newsroom. "Please keep praying. The roots of Christianity in Indonesia are in Ambon. If these roots can be uprooted, it may be the beginning of the end of Christianity in Indonesia."
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