Date: March 15, 2021
A Christian convert in Saudi Arabia is facing two court cases as well as threats of violence against him and his family.
The convert, named only as “A,” appeared in court on March 11, 2021, on charges of trying to convert Muslims. The charges arose from a conversation in a restaurant in 2020, in which he allegedly discussed his own conversion to Christianity.
The ruins of an ancient church building, probably dating from the fourth century, were discovered in Saudi Arabia in the 1980s. No visitors are allowed to the site [Source: Assyrian International News Agency (AINA)]
A second court case, scheduled for March 26, is concerning alleged financial misconduct relating to assistance “A” gave his sister, also a convert to Christianity, for her and her children to flee Saudi Arabia.
The sister’s husband has threatened violence against the wife and son of “A,” who may be vulnerable to attack should “A” be imprisoned.
“A” has already spent time in prison and suffered flogging for his faith in Christ and for helping his sister leave the country.
In Saudi Arabia, it is a capital offense for a Muslim to leave their Islamic religion, as specified in sharia (Islamic law). No Saudi Christian convert from Islam is known to have been executed in recent times, but some have been murdered by their families. The number of Saudi nationals who are Christians is unknown, and even for foreigners it is not safe to be openly Christian, because it is illegal to manifest any religion publicly except Islam.