Map reflects the 30 most recent Persecution Reports. Click HERE
for the Map Legend.
Thursday, March 6th, 2014
John Short, the 75-year-old Australian missionary detained in North Korea for nearly two weeks last month, has released a brief statement describing his captivity at the hands of the North Korean authorities. In his statement, John says he was subjected to four hour long interrogations every day for 13 days. The missionary was also confined to his room and kept under 24-hour guard. Short was also told that he faced up to 15 years in prison for his "crime" of handing out Christian literature in public. Kenneth Bae, an American missionary, was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor in May of last year after being detained in 2012.
Thursday, March 6th, 2014
South Korean news agencies are reporting that as many as thirty-three North Koreans may soon be executed for coming into contact with Kim Jung-wook, a Baptist missionary from South Korea who was arrested in the North back in October. Kim Jung-wook last week "confessed" to North Korean media sources that he was a spy working for the South. The South Korean intelligence community has flatly denied this, saying that Kim's work was purely religious in nature. Christianity is completely repressed in North Korea, with as many as 50,000 North Koreans serving time in political prison camps were torture, execution, and starvation occur on a daily basis.
Monday, March 3rd, 2014
“We were incredibly relieved to hear about the release of John Short this morning from North Korea. Everyone at ICC has spent the last two weeks eagerly awaiting news while doing everything possible to support John and his wife, Karen, during this time. We believe no one should have to face detention, arrest, or imprisonment simply for sharing their religious beliefs. While we are overjoyed with John’s release, we cannot forget that at least two other foreign missionaries, American Kenneth Bae and South Korean Kim Jeong-wook, remain imprisoned in the North. We can also not forget the millions of North Koreans who, for more than half a century, have faced unimaginable persecution because of their religious beliefs and continue to do so today.”
Monday, March 3rd, 2014
In a sudden turn of events, North Korea has deported 75-year-old Australian missionary John Short after detaining him almost two weeks ago in Pyongyang for distributing Gospel literature. North Korea is one of the most hostile nations on earth towards Christianity with as many as 50,000 Christians believed to be imprisoned in camps around the country. ICC volunteers have been praying extensively for John's release since he was detained. At least two other foreign missionaries, American Kenneth Bae and South Korean Kim Jung Wook, remain imprisoned in North Korea.
Saturday, March 1st, 2014
In a televised broadcast, North Korean media held a news conference with Baptist evangelist Kim Jeong-wook, who was detained in the country back in October. During the broadcast, Kim "confesses" to being a South Korean spy and committing anti-government activities. South Korea has adamantly denied that Kim worked for their intelligence services and has called for his release based on the fact that he was only conducting religious activities. A friend of Kim's has also said the notion he was working as a spy is "ridiculous." North Korea has detained several Christian missionaries over the past 18 months, including American Kenneth Bae and Australian John Short.
Friday, February 28th, 2014
On February 16, North Korean authorities detained Christian missionary John Short, 75, in Pyongyang while he was on a legal tour inside the country. He has not been heard from since. For more than 50 years, the North Korean government under the Kim family has completely outlawed Christianity. Tens of thousands of Christians are believed to be held in prison camps around the country, and last November several Christians were believed to be publicly executed for owning Bibles. John and his wife Karen have been missionaries to China since 1969.
Wednesday, February 19th, 2014
International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that Australian missionary John Short, 75, was arrested by North Korean authorities on Sunday in the nation’s capital, Pyongyang. John, a career missionary based in Hong Kong, was traveling to the reclusive nation with a tour group and was carrying Christian literature translated into Korean.
Monday, February 17th, 2014
In a long awaited high profile report, a United Nations Commission of Inquiry has condemned North Korea and its leaders for crimes against humanity, calling on the international community to take swift and decisive action. Michael Kirby, the head of the commission, pointed out that the world has no excuse not to act, knowing full well the extent and depth of the atrocities being committed in North Korea. The report also pointed out that "severe punishments" are carried out against those who practice Christianity. North Korea is widely considered to be the worlds worst persecutor of Christians in the world today, with as many as 50,000 Christians currently locked up in prison camps.
Friday, February 14th, 2014
Kenneth Bae, an American missionary, has been held by the world's most despotic regime for over a year after being arrested for allegedly trying to "overthrow" the government. Kenneth is a devout Christian and was leading tour groups into North Korea before being arrested and sentenced last May to 15 years of hard labor. Pro-North Korean media recently revealed that he had been moved out of a hospital where he was being treated for various ailments back to a secret labor camp in an unknown location. North Korea is considered to be the world's worst persecutor of Christians, with as many as 70,000 Christians currently believed to be held in concentration like camps where they face starvation and execution on a daily basis.
Monday, February 10th, 2014
On Friday, a North Korean news source published video of a meeting between imprisoned missionary Kenneth Bae and a Swedish diplomat, revealing that Kenneth has been moved back to a labor camp somewhere in North Korea on January 20th after being kept in a hospital for several months. Kenneth, who was detained by North Korean authorities in November of 2012, was sentenced by the regime to 15 years of hard labor for allegedly trying to overthrow the government. North Korea, led by Kim Jong-un, is violently hostile towards Christianity and has sentenced tens of thousands of Christians to life imprisonment for practicing their faith. Other have been executed for simply owning a Bible.
Friday, February 7th, 2014
Four congressman, all veterans of the Korean war, wrote an open letter to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un asking for the release of imprisoned Christian missionary and American citizen Kenneth Bae. Kenneth, a devout Christian, was detained by authorities in North Korea more than a year ago and sentenced to 15 years of hard labor for allegedly attempting to "overthrow the state." Christianity is completely outlawed in what is widely considered the world's most dangerous place to be a Christian. Something as simple as owning a Bible can result in the arrest or execution of the owner and the life imprisonment of their family.
Wednesday, January 29th, 2014
Kenneth Bae, an American citizen and missionary, has been imprisoned by North Korean authorities for over a year in what many see as an attempt by the dictatorship to use him as a bargaining chip with the United States. Kenneth, a devout Christian, was operating a legal tour group inside North Korea when he was arrested. North Korea completely outlaws the practice of Christianity and has publicly executed citizens for owning Bibles. In addition, tens of thousands of Christians are believed to be imprisoned in North Korean labor camps where starvation and execution are a daily part of life.
Saturday, January 25th, 2014
While North Korea is already considered the most dangerous place on earth to be a Christian, one organization is predicting that new government regulations are going to make life even more difficult for the thousands of underground believers in the nation. These new guidelines include restrictions on "superstitious behaviour", which in North Korea can be something as simple as bowing your head to pray. Thousands of Christians are believed to be held in concentration camps where starvation and death from disease or forced labor are constant threats. In November the regime, led by Kim Jong-Un, is believed to have publicly executed Christians for Bible ownership.
Friday, January 24th, 2014
North Korea is undoubtedly the most difficult place for a Christian to live in the world today. An estimated 400,000 Christians live in North Korea, practicing their faith in almost total secrecy. A "crime" as simple as owning a Bible can be punished by life imprisonment or public execution. Nevertheless reports emerge that underground Christians are continuing to share their faith and minister throughout the "Hermit Kingdom", despite risk of death.
Tuesday, January 21st, 2014
Kenneth Bae, an American citizen and missionary, has been detained in North Korea for more than a year by a regime that is consistently recognized as the world's worst persecutor of Christians. Kenneth has been sentenced to 15 years of hard labor for allegedly attempting to undermine the North Korea regime. The charge however is more likely an attempt by North Korea to gain concessions from the United States. Christians in China must keep their faith completely secret, as even something as simple as owning a Bible can result in life imprisonment or execution.
Monday, January 20th, 2014
Kenneth Bae, who has been detained in North Korea for more than a year, said he hopes to "return to his family as soon as possible." The video, which was almost certainly made under duress, shows Kenneth wearing prison cloths and admitting to committing crimes against the regime. North Korea is the world's worst persecutor of Christians and has imprisoned hundreds of thousands of Christians over the past 60 years.
Tuesday, January 14th, 2014
The following article by Dr. David Curry of Open Doors examines why North Korea has remained at the top of their watch list for 12 consecutive years. It also relays the testimony of Hea Woo, a North Korean Christian who bravely shared her faith in Christ with fellow inmates of one of North Korea's notorious concentration camps. Open Doors estimates that between 50,000 and 70,000 Christians remain imprisoned in North Korea's political prison camp system.
Friday, January 10th, 2014
With 50,000 to 70,000 Christians believed to be locked away in horrific conditions at concentration camps around the country, North Korea remains indisputably the number one persecutor of Christians on earth today. Over the course of 2013 reports emerged of Christian missionaries killed traveling in and out of North Korea, of Christians executed in mass public executions, and of course of Kenneth Bae, the American missionary now detained for over a year. Around the world Christians must continue to pray for their brothers and sisters suffering so tremendously in the "Hermit Kingdom."
Wednesday, January 8th, 2014
The family of imprisoned Christian missionary Kenneth Bae have expressed their deep hurt at comments made by ex-NBA star Dennis Rodman to CNN in an interview yesterday. The former professional basketball player grew highly agitated when asked about the imprisoned missionary, eventually cursing at the CNN interviewer and implying that Kenneth somehow deserved to be imprisoned in North Korea. The missionary has been detained for over a year and was probably arrested due to his Christian work inside the country. North Korea is the world's most repressive regime when it comes to Christianity and has imprisoned as many as 70,000 Christians in concentration camps.
Wednesday, January 8th, 2014
A newly released study documents that more than 2,100 Christians were killed as “martyr’s” in 2013. The greatest increase was seen in Syria. With a reported 1,213 deaths, Syria alone eclipsed the global total of 1,201 from 2012. The report is intentionally narrow in its definition of “martyr” and tries to distinguish between Christians killed in the midst of broader conflict and those killed explicitly for their faith. Nine of the ten worst persecuting countries are Muslim-majority states. As a whole, the report finds that “Islamist extremism is the worst persecutor of the worldwide church.”
Wednesday, December 25th, 2013
Zhang Shanshan, the younger daughter of Pastor Zhang Shaojie, disappeared along with two other Christians after leaving their homes on Saturday and have not been seen since. Authorities in Nanle County, Henan Province, detained nearly two dozen Christians a month ago in a raid on an official government sanctioned "Three-Self" church. The pastor and several of the church leaders remain imprisoned despite protests by church members and attempts by human rights lawyers to assist in the case. Zhang Shanshan's family believer she may have been abducted by the authorities.
Saturday, December 21st, 2013
It began with a media frenzy. Six months into Kim Jong-un’s new reign over North Korea, the internet was filled with images and video of the smiling new leader waving to his beloved people. ABC news reported the “youthful supreme leader” was “attempting to forge a new image for himself and his country” by allowing women to wear pants and endorsing banned foods like French fries and pizza. A few months before, on Jan. 1, the newly minted leader of the world’s most militant regime had publicly called for an end to the almost fifty year old confrontation between the two Koreas.
Wednesday, December 18th, 2013
The recent drama over the detention of U.S. Korean War veteran Merrill Newman in North Korea and his subsequent release placed world attention on the dictatorial regime, however this was not enough to secure the release of Kenneth Bae, also an American citizen and imprisoned in the country since May. Kenneth is a "devout Christian" and was involved in missionary work when he was arrested by North Korean authorities. North Korea actively represses Christianity by routinely imprisoning entire families of believers and even executing those found to posses a Bible.
Wednesday, December 11th, 2013
New images obtained by human rights group Amnesty International show that North Korea's vast system of concentration camp style imprisonment is alive and well. As many as 200,000 political prisoners are believed to be held in the six camps, where they are forced into extremely difficult manual labor on starvation rations. Survivors report unimaginable horror stories from within the camps, were North Korean's can be sentenced to a life time of labor for something as simple as owning a Bible. In fact three generations of a single family can be sentenced to life for Bible ownership, or for practicing Christianity. An unknown number, probably in the tens of thousands, of the prison camp populations, are made up of Christians.
Tuesday, December 10th, 2013
As the world marks the 20th annual Human Rights day on Dec. 10, a Christian organization has renewed it's call once again for investigation into and action to halt the "crimes against humanity" being perpetrated against the North Korean people. Among the many crimes committed in North Korea is the relentless persecution of Christians, who are seen by the ruling regime as a threat to power. Tens of thousands of Christians are believed to be imprisoned in what can only be described as the closest thing to hell on earth, labor camps were starvation and disease run rampant and death is a constant companion. Christians have also been executed for the "crime" of possessing a Bible, most recently in November.
Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013
Few Christians, especially in the United States, have even a basic understanding of the extent to which Christians around the globe face discrimination, harassment, arrest, and death because of their faith in Christ. The following article, which first examines conditions for Christians living in North Korea, reveals fascinating and alarming statistics about the global breadth of anti-Christian activity. For instance, according to the Pew Forum, Christians faced harassment in 139 nations, or almost three quarters of all countries on earth, between 2006 and 2010. Another estimate is that 80 percent of all acts of religious discrimination in the world today are directed at Christians.
Sunday, December 1st, 2013
On Saturday the United States called on North Korea, the world's worst persecutor of the Christian faith, to release two American citizens, including one missionary, currently being held by the regime. The public call was made after news of another American citizen and a Korean war veteran, Merrill E. Newman, detained in North Korea back in October was made public. Newman joins Kenneth Bae, an active Christian missionary arrested last year, as a prisoner in what is largely considered the world's worst dictatorship. Although Mr. Newman was most likely detained for his participation in the 1950-1953 Korean War, religious beliefs can also be a cause behind arrest and even execution in the DPRK (Democratic People's Republic of North Korea). Earlier in November an unknown number of Christians were executed across the country for the "possession of Bibles."
Thursday, November 28th, 2013
For Christians living secretly in the world's darkest nation, simply remaining strong in the faith can be an incredible challenge. Making this all the harder is the requirement that all North Korean's essentially worship the deceased founder of the regime, Kim Il-sung. The following piece examines how Christians focus on worshiping God and do their best to avoid the idolatry that grips their nation.
Friday, November 22nd, 2013
A 50 year old Baptist evangelist as been captured and alleged for espionage by North Korea. From South Korea, Kim Jeong-Wook had worked on the North Korea/China border for years assisting North Korean refugees find shelter and food. When Kim discovered that some refugees had been discovered and arrested by North Korean authorities, he snuck into North Korea to see how he could help. Now that he is captured, the North Korean regime will likely deal with Kim harshly. Please pray for the wellbeing of this brave Christian brother.
Wednesday, November 20th, 2013
North Korea has been engaged in an aggressive effort to ferret-out and arrest Americans and Christian activists. It is believed by many that this may signal an effort by the Pyongyang regime to proceed additional "bargaining chips" prior to renewed negotiations with the United States and South Korea. North Korea now holds at least three Christian missionaries as prisoners, along with number ranging from hundreds to possibly thousands of Christian converts, in its infamous prisons.