Religious Freedom Still Not a Certainty as Sudan Inches Toward Civilian Rule

Sudan is one step closer to civilian rule. Believers are hopeful, yet wary.

Military and opposition leaders reportedly signed a constitutional declaration on Sunday. The accord builds upon a previous power-sharing agreement established in July. “[On] July 17th they signed a power-sharing agreement which contained – in very broad outlines – what the future ruling system would be, or at least in the interim period,” explains Daniel Hoffman of Middle East Concern.

“Now, in the constitutional declaration, they give it more details.”

Protestors and others invested in Sudan’s transformation received the news with mixed responses. “Some of them say it’s not enough,” shares Hoffman.

“[Others] say, ‘well, it’s a start at least. Let’s celebrate the fact that some steps were set in the right direction.’”

What does this mean for Sudan’s Christians?

Like the rest of Sudanese society, believers hope Sunday’s development is one more step toward positive change. “They were, and are still, hoping that there will be a peaceful transition… into a more open government,” Hoffman explains.

“A government that will rule justly; that will have the wellbeing of its citizens as its aim and not just perpetuating its own rule.”

However, doubt remains for some Christian leaders. As explained here by Middle East Concern, Sudanese believers face intense pressure. Islamic law governs Muslim-majority Sudan, and religious freedom – while theoretically allowed by Sudan’s Constitution – is denied in practice.

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SOURCE: Mission Network News, Katey Hearth