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Map reflects the 30 most recent Persecution Reports. Click HERE for the Map Legend.

 

 

Lebanon Cardinal: Christians Not Persecuted Minority, But In Middle East Fabric

Sunday, April 13th, 2014

Addressing the United Nations, Lebanese Cardinal Rai spoke about the realities confronting Christians in the Middle East. Rather than Christians being treated as a persecuted minority, a group that is somehow alien to the area, he pressed that Christians must be seen as a part of the Middle East fabric. They have suffered alongside of many others in the current hostilities, though often they have been targeted simply because of their religious identity. Yet, the Christian community still has a crucial role to play in the region.

Christians Fight for Middle East Religious Freedom Watchdog

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

Christians face a rising level of religious freedom around the world, and especially in the Middle East. Two recent studies from respected research organizations, Pew Forum and Open Doors, have highlighted the massive scale of the issue. Many are pushing for the United States to make the protection of religious minorities a core part of foreign policy, which the administration says that it already is. The problem has been in the failure to back the rhetoric with action. While there are political issues involved, it is imperative that the positions that exist to protect religious minorities be quickly filled if the United States is to have any credibility behind its claims to be a defender of religious freedom.

Congress Hears Testimony on ‘Flagrant’ Christian Persecution in Middle East

Friday, February 14th, 2014

Lawmakers listened to testimony from experts and religious leaders highlighting the persecution of Christians that is rampant across the Middle East. As a representative from the Vatican stated, Arab Christians “find themselves the target of constant harassment for no reason other than their religious faith.” The United States has an important role to play in leading the conversation to find solutions to religiously based discrimination and persecution.

Report: 9 out of 10 Top Christian Persecution Countries Due to Islamic Extremism

Friday, January 10th, 2014

In the latest report highlighting the status of Christian persecution around the world, 9 out of the top 10 countries are Muslim majority states, and Islamic extremism is the primary cause of their persecution of Christians. North Korea again holds the spot at #1 for the worst persecutor of Christians, but behind that it is Islamic extremism that is largely driving the problem. Another troubling aspect has been the relatively silence of the United States government on the issue, despite efforts within Congress to make it a higher priority for the State Department and the White House. 

Why Christians Are Crucial to the Middle East’s Future

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014

The following interview with Thomas Farr, director of the Religious Freedom Project at Georgetown University, provides important insight into why Christians play such an important role in the Middle East and how the promotion of religious freedom and the protection of Christians specifically is in the best interests of all peoples in the Middle East, and even in the West as well.

Persecution of Christians: No Room at the Inn

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Slowly across the Western world we are seeing more and more political and thought leaders awake to the reality of Christian persecution, and the massive scale on which it is taking place across the Middle East. The horrific abuses have been largely ignored for a number of reasons from “political correctness,” fear of “doing God” in public, or taking sides in some sort of “clash of civilizations.” None of these, even if they were accurate, are justification for allowing massive crimes against humanity to take place with near total impunity and with little outcry from those countries who claim to be the defenders of human rights.  

Middle East Christians Persecuted by Islamists, says Prince Charles

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

There is a campaign of persecution deliberately targeting Christians in the Middle East, Prince Charles said recently. Following meetings with the leaders of churches based in Syria and Egypt and hearing firsthand the accounts of what Christians are facing there, he concluded that there is organized persecution of Christians by Islamist militants throughout the region.

Pope Says ‘No Middle East without Christians’

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

Following a meeting with the leaders of churches across the Middle East Pope Francis spoke out calling for the church to support the continued existence of the church in areas that have increasingly become hostile to Christians. “We will not resign ourselves to imagining a Middle East without Christians,” Pope Francis said. This further highlights the work that is necessary to support the church and to address the political and cultural dynamics that are driving their exodus and in some cases martyrdom.

Fr. Badr: ‘Killing and Displacing Christians is a Disgrace’

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

In the last century there were Muslim and Christian martyrs killed mostly in defense of their homeland. In the 21st century they are now being killed because of their religious identity. The Christians in the Middle East suffer because they are Christians. A rising current of extremist ideology is threatening to tear apart the diverse social fabric of the region and replace it with one-faith, one-ideology.

No One Wants to Admit That There’s a War on Christians

Tuesday, October 8th, 2013

“We ignore too many things, and even more indefensibly, we pretend not to see too many things.” This is the reality for how much of the world has treated the intensifying war against Christians in much of the Middle East. Among many in the West there is a massive, and sometimes willful, ignorance of the realities confronting Christians around the world who are paying a high cost because of their faith. Many often thing of Christianity as a Western religion, though the reality is that nearly two thirds of the 2.2 billion Christians (Protestant and Catholic combined) live outside of the West and that number is rising. They are also far more likely to be the victims rather than the perpetrators of religious persecution.

Do Christians Have a Future In the Middle East?

Monday, October 7th, 2013

One of the most overlooked factors in understanding the political and cultural dynamics of the Middle East is the presence of the regions Christian communities. As the region has been in a state of upheaval for the past two years it has left many of these Eastern Christians wondering what future is left for them in the lands where they have lived for 2000 years. The reasons they are being driven out are numerous. They range from the very real threats of violence that has seen thousands killed as a result of their faith, to more subtle but just as damaging legal and political repression that clearly communicates they are no longer welcome as full members of society.

Christians in Middle East Want U.S. to Find Diplomatic Solutions in Syria

Friday, September 6th, 2013

At a gathering of Christian leaders from around the Middle East region many of them shared their concerns about military intervention from the United States or other Western countries. They see the massive humanitarian need and the personal crisis that has affected people and feel that the USA does not have any plan to assist them. They want the world to speak out for peace and justice and to work to ending the violence, not escalating it.

Archbishop to Visit Hard-Pressed Christian Minorities in Middle East

Monday, June 24th, 2013

In an effort to express his concern and solidarity with Christians who have faced extreme difficulties in recent years, newly appointed Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby will visit the Middle East. The Archbishop’s visit highlights the particular pressures Christians are facing as a result of the on-going violence in Syria and political turmoil throughout the region.

Muslim Brotherhood Threatens Stability in Jordan

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

Sheikh Hamam Sai’d, the head of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, is behind protests in the country, the Jewish Press reports. According to the article, the Brotherhood has garnered some US support in Jordan despite America’s close alliance with the Jordanian monarchy. Sai’d’s radical rhetoric, hard-line ideology, and support for Hamas in Gaza would not only be detrimental to US- Jordan relations if the Brotherhood were to gain political influence, but it would also bring instability to one of the only stable countries remaining in the Middle East. Moreover, the Brotherhood’s political and religious agenda remains one of the greatest threats to Jordan’s small Christian community and the rights of all religious minorities in the country.

Muslim Persecution of Christians: May 2012

Saturday, June 30th, 2012

Raymond Ibrahim writes for the Gatestone Institute that, “In Indonesia, Muslims threw bags of urine on Christians during worship; in Kashmir and Zanzibar, churches were set on fire; and in Mali, Christianity ‘faces being eradicated.’” Ibrahim’s series, titled ‘Muslim Persecution of Christians,’ is published each month to document cases of persecution – whether it be general discrimination, arrests, or murder – committed by Muslims in majority Islamic countries, Asia and the West.

No future for Iraqi Christians in Jordan

Friday, June 22nd, 2012

Hundreds of Iraqi Christians who fled persecution in their homeland have found a safe haven in Jordan, but they still face many difficulties as refugees, Aid to the Church in Need reports.

Christian Jordanian woman sues her Muslim employer

Monday, May 28th, 2012

“A Christian Jordanian woman said Sunday she is suing her Gulf Arab employer for arbitrary dismissal after she refused a new dress code forcing her to cover her head,” The Associated Press reports.

Arab Christians must fight for recognition in new regimes

Friday, April 27th, 2012

The survival of Christianity in the Middle East may depend on its ability to make new political alliances and end its dependency on the protection of long-standing, but unpopular regimes, the Guardian reports.

Middle Eastern Christians Increasingly Targeted by Blasphemy, Apostasy Laws

Sunday, February 19th, 2012

“Islamic law is increasingly used by authoritarian governments and extremist forces in the Muslim world to acquire and consolidate power, experts say, which is becoming an increasing threat to religious minorities, especially Christians,” the Christian Post reports.

Christianity in the Middle East… But There’s a Slim Hope in History

Saturday, November 26th, 2011

“Fear is… a sentiment voiced often these days by Arab Christians, a sad refrain for an ancient community that was so long a force in politics and culture in the Arab world. These days, a community that still numbers in the millions — with the largest populations in Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Iraq and the Palestinian territories — finds itself little more than a spectator to events reshaping a place it once helped create, and sometimes a victim of the violence that those events have unleashed,” The New York Times reports.

Christianity Threatens to be Extinct in its Birthplace

Sunday, November 20th, 2011

“The real danger of having no Christian presence in the Middle East within the next 5 years will be one of the main topics at a upcoming conference hosted by Dr. Rob Dalrymple Director of the Bible Accadamy at Cornerstone Fellowship.”

Middle East: Harder to bear

Sunday, April 24th, 2011

The Financial Times reports on the rise of persecution and decline of Christianity throughout the Middle East.

Christmas is not for us, say Iraqi Christian refugees in Jordan

Friday, December 24th, 2010

"Christmas is only for those who can celebrate it and it is not for us.”

Christian leaders dispute US report on religious freedoms in Jordan

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

Some church leaders questioned the recently released U.S. State Department report regarding religious freedom in Jordan, which stated: “The government continued to harass some citizens and resident foreign groups suspected of proselytising Muslims and a few Muslim coverts to Christianity, including by attempting to induce them to revert to Islam."

Arab Christians from Jordan risk all for Easter Sunday pilgrimage to Israel

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

Jordanian Christians pay a high price to worship in Jerusalem on Easter.

Armenians Lay Cornerstone for New Church on Jordan River

Sunday, November 22nd, 2009

Along the Jordan River “the Christian church has not forgotten the legacy of those first followers of Christ.”

Pope urges world to protect Iraq Christians

Monday, May 11th, 2009

"I urge diplomats and the international community they represent, together with local political and religious leaders, to do everything possible to ensure the ancient Christian community of that noble land its fundamental right to peaceful coexistence with their fellow citizens,"

Pope Benedict XVI tells Middle East Christians to persevere

Monday, May 11th, 2009

Conflict and persecution from radical Muslims is forcing Christians to flee from the Middle East. Pope Benedict XVI encouraged the Christians in the region to preserve in their faith despite the difficulties they face.

Pope: in the Holy Land to speak of reconciliation in the midst of political and religious tensions

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

“With my visit I propose to confirm and encourage the Christians of the Holy Land, who must daily confront many difficulties”

Jordan Militants Get Heavy Sentence for Church Bomb Plot

Saturday, March 21st, 2009

Three Islamist extremists are sentenced for more than 22 years imprisonment after they attempted to bomb a Church in Jordan.

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ICC is constantly monitoring the state of Christian persecution in countries around the world and looking for ways that we can act as bridge between our supporters and the persecuted church. Beyond the projects you see above, we are working in many other areas to provide practical assistance to our brothers and sisters in Christ. View our other projects page to understand more of our work and keep up to date on our current projects.