At least five Pentecostal Christians have been arrested and several others have gone into hiding after they went to the airport to welcome a visiting Ethiopian preacher.
Eritrean Christians rejoice at these positive developments but still wait for freedom to come and prison doors to open.
A minute’s silence was held during the annual vigil on behalf of Christian prisoners at the Eritrean Embassy in London – to remember prisoners of conscience who died during the past year as well as two long-term supporters of Eritrean Christian prisoners.
Eritrean police arrested 32 Christians in Asmara in March, including a newlywed couple and ten of their guests.
Fikadu Debesay, who was detained in May during raids on evangelical Christians, has died in prison.
Patriarch Antonios, the 90-year-old legitimate patriarch of the Eritrean Orthodox Church, participated in a service at St Mary’s Cathedral in Asmara on Sunday 16 July – his first public appearance in over a decade.
Eritrean security forces have arrested another 22 Christians – 17 in the capital, Asmara, and 5 in the town of Dongolo.
The Eritrean security forces have arrested almost one hundred Christians in the past month.
Protesters from Ireland and Britain joined Eritreans in a vigil at the Eritrean Embassy calling for the release of Christian prisoners in Eritrea.
Two Pentecostal Christians died on 17 March, five days after being transferred to hospital from detention, where they had been on hunger strike.