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Thirteen Christians have been released from custody in Eritrea, known as the ‘North Korea’ of Africa. Seven women and six men were set free in July. They had reportedly been in prison for some ten years.

For their protection we are unable to name them. Many ex-prisoners in this extremist Marxist state are under constant threat of re-arrest.

Their release follows an international call for prayer for two Christian leaders who had been in jail for more than 7,000 days.

19 yrs behind bars

Pastor Dr Kiflu Geberemeskel
Jailed: Kiflu Gebremeskel

Pastor Haile Naizgi and Dr. Kiflu Gebremeskel have both been in prison for more than 19 years and are still behind bars; but we rejoice that 13 others have been released.

It is thought that more than 300 evangelical Christians remain, jailed without trial indefinitely, for worshipping Jesus in their homes for sharing their faith.

Only Eritrean Orthodox, Catholicism, Sunni Islam and Lutheran denominations are permitted. All other churches were closed in May 2002.

Eritrea book

Release International is currently completing an autobiography by Dr Berhane Asmelash, Director of partners Release Eritrea, which we hope to publish later in the year.

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