ADVERTISING
 
Sunday, August 25   Sign in or Register
 
Evangelical Focus
 
Flecha
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
FOLLOW US ON
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud
 

Newsletter
Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.
 
 

POLL
Society
Should Christians join social protests?



SEE MORE POLLS
 

 
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED



World Watch List 2019
 

WWL 19: One Christian out of nine suffers persecution worldwide

According to World Watch List, released today by Open Doors International, 4,305 people died in 2018 because of their Christian faith. Christian persecution has drastically increased.

SOURCES Open Doors AUTHOR Evangelical Focus 16 JANUARY 2019 14:55 h GMT+1
Map of persecution of Christians, WWL 2019. / Open Doors.

The 2019 World Watch List (WWL), prepared annually by the non-profit organization Open Doors, confirms one more year that the persecution of Christians has grown worldwide.



In 2018, 4,305 people lost their lives because of their Christian faith, a considerable increase compared to the previous year, when 3,066 murdered Christians were counted.



One Christian out of nine in the world suffers persecution at a high, very high or extreme level.



 



“PERSECUTION KEEPS GROWING”



“We have statistical evidence to support our experience that persecution is growing both in intensity and in the number of countries and Christians affected”, said Wybo Nicolai, founder of the WWL 26 years ago, now director of external operations of Open Doors International.



According to the director, “the list does not break the trend of previous years, but it is even worse than last year”.



There has also been an alarming increase in the number of churches attacked, from 783 in 2017 to 1,847 in 2018, and in the number of Christians arrested, prosecuted and imprisoned for reasons directly related to their faith: 3,150 for the 1,905 cases registered in the 2018 WWL.



“There are some countries that have a very specific vision of how things should be, so that they do not accept that there is anyone who acts differently. that is what we are seeing in the Islamic and communist countries”, the director of Open Doors Spain, Ted Blake, told Spanish news website Protestante Digital.



“If last year we were talking about 60 countries with a high level of persecution, this year we are talking about 73. It is a clear indicator that the trend is toward greater intolerance with Christianity”, he added.





 



SOUTHEAST ASIA, THE MOST DANGEROUS REGION



For the 18th year in a row, North Korea holds the top spot on the World Watch List, followed by Afghanistan and Somalia. The first two countries have the same score (94 over 100) and differ by a few tenths, while that Somalia continues with 91 points out of a maximum of 100.



Around 50,000–70,000 Christians are believed to be in North Korea labour camps.



“Possibly there is beginning to be some relaxation in the tension that exists in North Korea towards Christians", Blake pointed out, referring to the agreement between the Asian country and the United States and the recovery of relations with South Korea.



In China, the situation of religious freedom is the worst of the last decade and begins to remember the time of the Cultural Revolution.



On the 2019 WWL, China rose from rank 43 to 27. More than 170 churches have been attacked or forced to close down, crosses have been removed from a number of buildings, and believers have been arrested (1,131).





Due to laws which are designed to enshrine a growing ultra-nationalistic agenda, India has risen one more position and is already ranked 10th, with 83 points, 28 points more than in 2014.



“Year after year, the number of cases of violence against Christians has practically doubled in India. It is revolving around a religious nationalist vision", Blake explained.



In Southeast Asia, the triple bombing of churches in the city of Surabaya in Indonesia has been one of the most prominent terrorist acts against Christians in 2018.



 



AT LEAST 3731 DIED IN NIGERIA



Persecution has also grown in Africa,mainly because of the terrorism of different terrorist groups such as Seleka in the Central African Republic, Boko Haram in Nigeria or Al-Shabbaab in Somalia.



Regarding the number of Christians killed, Nigeria is once again the country with more deadly crimes: at least 3,731 people (87% of the total deaths) have been murdered because of their faith, almost twice the number of 2,000 registered last year.



 



Nigerian Christians after a church service. / Open Doors



The violence in Nigeria has also left Christian villages totally depopulated where the believers have had to flee because of the arrival of their attackers, who move through the region with total impunity.



Meanwhile, Algeria has climbed up to 22 places in the WWL ranking, reaching a score of 70 points. “Now we are seeing that there are more conversions of Arab Muslims in Algeria, and the Islamic population is reacting negatively against those facts”, the director of Open Doors Spain said.



Another country of the continent where persecution has increased most is the Central African Republic, which has gone from position 35 to 21. On the contrary, Iraq fell to rank 13 on the 2019 World Watch List.



With the territorial defeat of Islamic State, thousands of Christians returned to rebuild and resettle, especially in the Nineveh region, although they continue to face harassment, discrimination, and often physical and emotional abuse.



Somalia, Libya, Sudan and Eritrea continue to be among the ten countries in the world where Christianity is most persecuted, with 86 points or more.



 



RUSSIA ENTERS THE WWL



Christians are also persecuted in Europe, where the number of Christians murdered has tripled in the last year, going from two to six.



“There are two things to take into account in this situation. First, Christians who suffer persecution in other parts of the world have arrived in Europe, and those who persecute Christians in other parts of the world have also come”, Blake explained.



In addition, “there is a radicalization in the continent, with extremism and populism, each one being intolerant in their own way".



Russia has broken into 41st place in the ranking, but Greece is the European country in which more Christians have died, four, followed by France and Germany.



The number of attacks on churches and temples has also increased, from a hundred registered in the previous list to 194 in 2018. 54 of these cases have occurred in France, followed by Germany (44) and Spain (28).



 



SOUTH AND CENTRAL AMERICA: MEXICO AND COLOMBIA RANK 39 AND 47



Mexico (39) and Colombia (47) are the Latin American countries the 50 first countries of the WWL.



“There are high levels of organised crime and corruption in Mexico and Colombia. Christians who stand against this, try to prevent young people from joining their ranks, or refuse to engage in illegal activities, are seen as a threat by criminal gangs”, Open Doors international points out.



 



The WWL 2019. / Open Doors



 



THE GENDER FACTOR



According to the report, “from a global perspective, persecution comes from different avenues: from a believer’s family, friends, fellow-villagers and work colleagues, community councils, local government officials and from police and legal systems”.



“In the top five most dangerous countries to live as a Christian, the female experience of persecution is characterised by sexual violence and forced marriage whereas Christian men are more likely to be detained without trial or killed by the authorities or extremists”, it added.



Additionally, “the persecution suffered by Christian men is focused, severe and visible, while women suffer a more complex, violent and less visible persecution. This makes it more difficult to know the real dimension of the persecution experienced by Christian women”.


 

 


0
COMMENTS

    If you want to comment, or

 



 
 
YOUR ARE AT: - - WWL 19: One Christian out of nine suffers persecution worldwide
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
AUDIOS Audios
 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels

An interview with the socio-political representative of the European Evangelical Alliance about how evangelical Christians work at the heart of the European Union.

 
Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church

An interview with Lars Dahle, of the Steering Committee of the Lausanne Movement Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity held in Rome.

 
Testimony: Wildfires near Athens Testimony: Wildfires near Athens

Nico Spies, a Christian worker in Athens, gives details about the wildfires in Greece.

 
Arie de Pater: Refugees deserve a fair and efficient process Arie de Pater: Refugees deserve a fair and efficient process

The Brussels representative of the European Evangelical Alliance offers a Christian perspective on the crisis: “We can’t reduce people to just a number that needs to be controlled”.

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
IFES World Assembly: ‘Messengers of Hope’ IFES World Assembly: ‘Messengers of Hope’

Students, graduates and staff of the global evangelical student movement reflected together on how the books of Luke and Acts apply to today's universities.

 
Christians at work - the missing link in fulfilling the Great Commission Christians at work - the missing link in fulfilling the Great Commission

Photos of the Lausanne Movement Global Workplace Forum, celebrated in Manila.

 
European Freedom Network Bridge 2019 conference European Freedom Network Bridge 2019 conference

Images of the fifth EFN gathering. Experts, activists, counsellors and church leaders met in Pescara, Italy.

 
Glimpses of the ELF 2019 conference Glimpses of the ELF 2019 conference

Evangelical leaders from across Europe meet in Wisla (Poland) to network for mission in a range of fields. The vision is to renew the biblical church and evangelise Europe.

 
‘Small churches, big potential for transformation’ ‘Small churches, big potential for transformation’

Photos of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance’s annual gathering “Idea 2019”, in Murcia. Politicians and church leaders discussed about the role of minorities in society.

 
VIDEO Video
 
How has Christianity influenced the modern world? How has Christianity influenced the modern world?

Paul Copan, Chair of Philosophy and Ethics of Palm Beach Atlantic University, explains how many key features of Western civilization, are the legacy of the biblical faith being lived out by believers in society.

 
Chinese Homecoming Gathering: Thousands say 'we’re one' Chinese Homecoming Gathering: Thousands say 'we’re one'

Christians from China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, and North America, from different ethnic backgronds, came together to pray for unity as the body of Christ.

 
How have global missions changed over the last century? How have global missions changed over the last century?

The centre of gravity of Christianity has shifted from Europe to Africa, says Nana Yaw Offei Awuku, Director of the Lausanne Younger Leaders Generation initiative.

 
Christian organisations call to pray for new British Prime Minister Christian organisations call to pray for new British Prime Minister

Representatives of the National Day of Prayer, the Evangelical Alliance and CARE express the need for churches to pray for the new leadership of a country divided by Brexit and other issues.

 
GWF in Manila: “Kingdom building requires global collaboration” GWF in Manila: “Kingdom building requires global collaboration”

850 from 108 countries met for the Global Workplace Forum, June 25-29. The gathering was organised by the Lausanne Movement. “Every workplace is a place of ministry”.

 
 
Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube
 
 
WE RECOMMEND
 
PARTNERS
 

 
AEE
EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.
 

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.