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A market in Keren, Eritrea - Photo: Flickr / David Stanley
A market in Keren, Eritrea.
Photo: Flickr / David Stanley (c)

A recent wave of raids against Christians has taken place, with at least 150 arrested in the past two months. On June 23rd, 70 members of the Faith Mission Church of Christ in Keren were arrested (see this report). The believers were taken to the Ashufera prison which, according to reports, consists of a series of tunnels in a remote area outside of the city. Prisoners there are forced to dig more tunnels when additional space is needed.

Also in Keren, six Christian government employees were taken to court on August 16th where the judge ordered them to renounce their faith. All six refused, saying they would not "negotiate their faith." Two days later, 80 more Christians were detained by security officials in Godayef, an area near the Asmara airport. Those detained had been taken to a police station where they were still being held at last report. For more information on the suffering facing Christians in Eritrea, go to our online country report.

Praise God for the ongoing testimony of these believers who are standing firm in the midst of trials. May their faith and endurance be a source of encouragement to other followers of Christ and a testimony to those in need of His eternal salvation -- including their captors. Ask the Lord to also continue ministering to the many Eritrean Christians suffering deplorable prison conditions in other parts of the country because of their beliefs. May He mediate on their behalf as well, miraculously making a way for their safe release.

Country Information


6,081,196 (July 2020 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Tigrinya (55), Tigre (30), Saho (4), Kunama (2), Rashaida (2), Bilen (2), other (5)

Religion (%)
Islam (47.4), Christianity (48.8), other (3.8)

President Isaias Afworki (1993)

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system of civil, customary, and Islamic religious law

Sources: CIA World Factbook, Operation World

Pray for Eritrea

Ask the Lord to provide imprisoned Eritrean believers a means of escape and a place of safe refuge. Pray for Him to also work deeply in the hearts of the country's governing officials so they will grant His people the freedom to worship Him and glorify His matchless name. Mindful of their own human frailties, may these political leaders realize the need to make Jesus their own personal Saviour and Lord by accepting His gift of eternal salvation.


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Eritrea News

  • Three Elderly Pastors Arrested
    Georgio Gebreab and Samuel Okbamichael - Photos: Church in Chains
    Georgio Gebreab and Samuel Okbamichael
    Photos: Church in Chains

    Three semi-retired pastors in the Eritrean capital of Asmara were arrested towards the latter part of July. Since they were all over 70 years old, and only occasionally conducted funeral or wedding services, it is unclear why these elde

  • Recently Arrested Christian Prisoners Released
    Nakura prison - Photo: Church in Chains https://www.churchinchains.ie/
    Nakura prison
    Photo: Church in Chains

    Earlier this month, it was reported that 23 women had been arrested at a prayer meeting in Asmara, the capital of Eritrea, along with 12 others in the city of Assab. (To review a previously posted report, go to our country report, where there is also a link to

  • 35 New Arrests
    Video: Interview with Andrew Boyd regarding recent arrests
    Click to view the video.

    In recent months, we joyfully shared the good news that dozens of Christians had been released from prisons in Eritrea (see our country report). However, any hopes that the string of releases signalled a change of heart towards Christians in the oppressive regime were dashe

  • 83 More Christian Prisoners Released!
    Mussie Eyob and Twen Theodros
    Mussie Eyob and Twen Theodros were
    among those released from prison.

    Over the past six months, we have been pleased to announce the release of Christian prisoners from Eritrean prisons. According to a recent report from Church in Chains, at least 83 more Christians have been released since late Janu