A 17 April trial date has been set for several people detained since January.
On 21 and 22 January 2021, police in Hargeisa, Somaliland arrested Mohamed, Hamdi, an Ethiopian woman, Aster, and Hamdi A, a Somali woman. Mohamed and Hamdi’s baby was detained with them. In February additional arrests took place.
Six people are charged with offences against the state religion (Islam) and inciting others to disobey laws relating to public order. Three of them, including Mohamed and Hamdi, are also charged with apostasy as well as spreading and teaching Christianity. The Ethiopian and other Somali women are not mentioned in the indictment. Their lawyer is seeking clarity as to their status.
In September 2020 another Christian couple was arrested and later deported to Somalia.
Somali Christians request prayer:
- That the detainees will experience God’s closeness and strength, especially during court hearings
- For a fair trial to be held, that ongoing advocacy efforts will bear fruit and that those detained will be released soon.
- For strength, wisdom and boldness for the lawyer who represents the people arrested in January.