(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)
Mussie Eyob and Twen Theodros
Mussie Eyob and Twen Theodros were
among those released from prison.

Over the past six months, we have been pleased to announce the release of Christian prisoners from Eritrean prisons. According to a recent report from Church in Chains, at least 83 more Christians have been released since late January. Some of those released had been held in captivity for more than ten years, often under horrific conditions.

Those recently released include Mussie Eyob, who was arrested in February 2011 for preaching to Muslims (read more). The names of other recently freed believers are also becoming known. It has been revealed that Twen Theodros was released in late 2020. Helen Berhane writes of her friendship with Twen in her autobiography, Song of the Nightingale. As they suffered together in the same shipping container, Twen often cared for Helen's physical needs. For more on Twen's story, see this page.

It is now believed that there are about 150 Christians remaining imprisoned in Eritrea. The reason behind the releases is unclear, but it may be an attempt to deflect international attention away from the involvement of Eritrean troops in the war within the Tigray region of Ethiopia.

Praise be to our Heavenly Father for mightily working on behalf of His suffering children and making it possible for more of them to be freed from prison! May the governing officials of Eritrea refrain from opposing the Gospel and stop their oppression of His people. Pray that the Christians remaining in prison will be encouraged and fortified by the presence of the Holy Spirit among them as they eagerly await their hopeful release from captivity.

Country Information


6,081,196 (July 2020 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Tigrinya (55), Tigre (30), Saho (4), Kunama (2), Rashaida (2), Bilen (2), other (5)

Religion (%)
Islam (47.4), Christianity (48.8), other (3.8)

President Isaias Afworki (1993)

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system of civil, customary, and Islamic religious law

Sources: CIA World Factbook, Operation World

Pray for Eritrea

Ask the Lord to provide imprisoned Eritrean believers a means of escape and a place of safe refuge. Pray for Him to also work deeply in the hearts of the country's governing officials so they will grant His people the freedom to worship Him and glorify His matchless name. Mindful of their own human frailties, may these political leaders realize the need to make Jesus their own personal Saviour and Lord by accepting His gift of eternal salvation.


Select a Region

Eritrea News

  • Three Elderly Pastors Arrested
    Georgio Gebreab and Samuel Okbamichael - Photos: Church in Chains
    Georgio Gebreab and Samuel Okbamichael
    Photos: Church in Chains

    Three semi-retired pastors in the Eritrean capital of Asmara were arrested towards the latter part of July. Since they were all over 70 years old, and only occasionally conducted funeral or wedding services, it is unclear why these elde

  • Recently Arrested Christian Prisoners Released
    Nakura prison - Photo: Church in Chains https://www.churchinchains.ie/
    Nakura prison
    Photo: Church in Chains

    Earlier this month, it was reported that 23 women had been arrested at a prayer meeting in Asmara, the capital of Eritrea, along with 12 others in the city of Assab. (To review a previously posted report, go to our country report, where there is also a link to

  • 35 New Arrests
    Video: Interview with Andrew Boyd regarding recent arrests
    Click to view the video.

    In recent months, we joyfully shared the good news that dozens of Christians had been released from prisons in Eritrea (see our country report). However, any hopes that the string of releases signalled a change of heart towards Christians in the oppressive regime were dashe