World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Christians in Bhutan Running Out of Time

Christians in Bhutan Running Out of Time

WASHINGTON, June 16 /Christian Newswire/ -- The Washington-DC based human
rights group, International Christian Concern (ICC)
learned earlier in the year that two Christian men in Bhutan were arrested
for showing the Jesus film in a Buddhist home. Recently, they were given
10 days to appeal to the courts for bail to avoid serving 3.5 and
3-year-long prison sentences for showing the Jesus film in a Buddhist

We previously had been asked to keep silent on their case until appeals
were exhausted. These Christians are now asking that their story be
publicized to bring international pressure on the government of Bhutan to
grant their release.

These two men, who were government workers, are Benjamin (Budhu Mani
Dungana) and John (Purna Bahadhur Tamang). They were arrested on January
7, 2006, in the small town of Paro while they were on their way to preach
the word of God to a small group of people. While the Chief Judge for the
district court of Paro did not consider the case serious enough to keep
the men in prison, it was moved to the Crime and Investigation Department
of the Royal Bhutan Police in Thimphu, Bhutan’s capital. Lt. Col. Kipchu,
head of the Crime and Investigation Department, is known to be violently
opposed to Christianity, and has dragged the two men from Paro to Thimphu
and back again multiple times and imprisoned them under wretched

Benjamin, who is married and has three children, worked as a General Nurse
Midwife (GNM) at Jigme Dorji Wangchuk national referral hospital. John,
who is married with one child, was an Auditor at the Royal Audit
Authority. They were given 10 days to appeal for bail and fight the case
with the help of a prominent lawyer. However, as one source from Bhutan
said, In Bhutan the government is always right, we are always wrong. So
there is very little chance of winning the case unless there is
intervention from [on] high.

ICC urges all concerned Christians to contact the government officials
listed below and politely ask them to release Benjamin and John from
prison. Please do not be forceful or belligerent as such attitudes may
cause the government of Bhutan to harden its stance towards these
prisoners. Most Bhutanese will be able to understand and speak English.

Secretary to His Majesty the King of Bhutan
Dasho Pema Wangchen
Phone: +975-2-322962
Fax: +975-2-323232

Chief Justice of Royal Court of Justice
Lyonpo Sonam Tobgye
Phone: +975-2-322613
Fax: +975-2-322921

Prime Minister of Bhutan
Lyonpo Sangay Ngedup
Phone: +975-2-322129
Fax: +975-2-323153

Minister of Ministry of Home and Cultural Affairs
Lyonpo Jigme Y. Thinley
Phone: +975-2-322643
Fax: +975-2-322214 attempts to reach out to as many people as possible and
provide information on Bhutan.


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news