Terror group aims to rid Somalia of Christians

Somalia's Islamist terror group al Shabab wants to rid the Muslim country of all Christians and is specifically targeting Christian converts from Islam according to CBN.

Al Shabab recently joined with al Qaeda and wants Sharia law implemented in the country.

In 2008 an Al Shabab video swept the internet portraying the brutal beheading of 25-year-old aid worker Mansour Mohammed. His crime was simply his conversion from Islam to Christianity.

One year ago, a Christian convert was awakened in his home by Al Shabab soldiers. "They ransacked my house, searched my bag, and found several pages from a Bible," he told CBN News. "They had crosses on them."

He was taken away, imprisoned and tortured.

"I was blindfolded and they put me in a dark, underground cell. They beat me up with a wooden baton," he explained.

"They wanted to know where I got the Bible pages and if I knew of any others like me," he continued. "When they finally took the blindfold off, I noticed three dead bodies in the room. They placed them there just to frighten me" CBN writes.

Yet, before the terrorists could follow through with their plan of killing him, he and two other prisoners made a daring escape.

"The guards thought they had locked our cell door, but it wasn't locked. We opened it, ran to the wall, and started climbing," Abdi recalled. "The guards opened fire on us. Bullets killed one of my cellmates, but the other prisoner and I jumped over the wall."

Abdi, which is an alias, is now living with his family in a safe location. Although he feels physical pain from the torture he endured, he says he feels closer to God.

"I was happy to go through all this because now I am stronger spiritually," Abdi said. "People prayed for me to escape. Their prayers are what saved my life."

Somali Christian leaders estimate fewer than 200 Christians exist in this country of 10 million.

One lady, who asked to be called Fozia, was publically flogged for deciding not to wear a burka. She was beaten because officials said she was "naked" although she was simply dressed modestly.

She inched her way home with delbilitating injuries, and her neighbor came to her aid.

"I was bleeding; my flesh was peeling," Fozia recalled. "It was extremely painful."

As it is too risky to own a Bible, she listens to Christian radio broadcasts from neighboring Kenya.

There is a safehouse run by Voice of the Martyrs which is in a secret location in the Horn of Africa.

At the safe house, Somali Christians gather for a time of worship and Bible study. It not only gives former Muslims a place to eat and sleep, it provides them with spiritual fellowship and discipleship.

Fozia and other Somali Christians are praying for a better life -- one free from the oppression of al Shabab and other Islamists.

"Pray that we Somali believers will live our lives closer to the kingdom of God," Fozia asked. "Pray that we will endure the weight of life in this Islamic nation."