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Christians Feel Uncertainty in Nepal

on 2001/6/18 9:48:02 ( 1388 reads )


ONTARIO, CANADA, June 14, 2001: The following item appeared on this Christian evangelical website: "Christian Aid Mission's Nepal representative, Sarla Mahara, said there are some concerns about how the recent upheaval in Nepal could affect the church. 'The late king was a pro-democracy guy, so he really had nothing against the Christians; but now, it's so unstable. We don't know if this situation would make the Maoists stronger because the Palace is very weak right now. It's a very tough situation for the Christians.' There are concerns that Maoist rebels, who have been actively fighting the government in western Nepal, could use this situation as an opportunity to make gains in taking over the government. Mahara said, 'The ruling government is totally confused with this new king who is, in my opinion, a real hard-liner. He's just not very much for democracy.' Since the democratic revolution of 1990, there has been a measure of freedom of religion in Nepal. During this time the number of Christian believers has risen dramatically -- over 10 times what it was in 1990. It is estimated that Christians make up 2 percent of Nepal's population." It is illegal to convert to another religion in Nepal, but the law is not enforced.

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