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



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.

Reported Christian ‘Martyr’ Deaths Double in 2013

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.”

Yemen’s Forgotten Christians

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

Reports suggest there are some 2,500 indigenous Christians in Yemen, most of who worship underground, the Gatestone Institute reports. According to human rights activist, Abdul Razzaq al-Azazi, "Christians in Yemen cannot practice their religion nor can they go to church freely. Society would work on having them enter Islam." This article analyzes the status and persecution faced by Christians in the country.

Prayer update on Christian foreigners abducted and killed in Yemen

Sunday, June 17th, 2012

June 12 marked three years since the kidnapping of nine foreigners in Yemen. Three of them were murdered shortly after and two were released in May, 2010. There is still no news of the remaining four. Christians in Yemen and Middle East Concern has asked the church to continue to pray.

A Tale of Two American Martyrs

Sunday, June 17th, 2012

The stories of Jeremiah Small and Joel Shrun, two American Christian teachers killed for sharing their faith with Muslims in northern Iraq and Yemen.

Muslim Persecution of Christians: March, 2012

Saturday, April 28th, 2012

Raymond Ibrahim writes for the Gatestone Institute that, “Saudi Arabia's highest Islamic legal authority decreed that churches in the region must be destroyed… American teachers in the Middle East were murdered for being Christian or talking about Christianity; churches were banned or bombed, and nuns terrorized by knife-wielding Muslim mobs.” 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.

Al Qaeda claims it killed Christian American in Yemen for “spreading Christianity”

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

“Gunmen fatally shot an American teacher (Joel Shrum) in the Yemeni province of Taiz on Sunday,” CNN reports. “In a text message sent to Yemeni media outlets, [Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the terror network's affiliate in Yemen] said the victim was spreading Christianity, calling him one of the biggest missionaries in the country.” The International Training and Development Center, where Joel worked, denied accusations that Joel was proselytizing.

Christian American teacher killed by gunmen in Yemen for “proselytizing”

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

“Al Qaeda-linked militants who claimed responsibility for the death of an American teacher in Yemen yesterday said he was targeted for being ‘one of the biggest American proselytizers’ in the Arab nation,” the Christian Science Monitor 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.

Yemen: Update on Christian foreigners abducted and killed

Saturday, December 17th, 2011

“Monday… [marked] two and a half years since the kidnapping of nine foreigners in Saada, north-west Yemen, three of whom were murdered shortly afterwards… There continues to be no news of Johannes and Sabine (a German couple), Simon (their son, aged 3) or of Tony (a British man),” Middle East Concern reports.

Political Islam poised to dominate the new world bequeathed by Arab spring

Monday, December 12th, 2011

“[Political Islam] may prove to be one of the most lasting legacies of the Arab spring,” The Guardian reports.

Yemen prayer update on Christian foreigners abducted and killed

Sunday, June 12th, 2011

“12th June 2011 marks the second anniversary of the kidnapping of nine foreigners in Saada, north-west Yemen, three of whom were murdered shortly afterwards,” Middle East Concern reports.

Prayer update: status of foreigners abducted and killed in Yemen

Saturday, January 15th, 2011

On June 12, 2009, nine Christian foreigners were kidnapped in Saada, Yemen. Three were murdered soon after, and two were released unharmed on May 17, 2010. Middle East Concern reports that four foreigners are still missing and asks for prayer on their behalf.

Yemen prayer update on foreigners abducted and killed

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

Middle East Concern mobilizes prayer for three Christian foreigners still believed to be held hostage after the kidnapping of nine foreigners in Saada, Yemen on June 12th, 2009. Days after the kidnapping, three were found murdered, and on May 17th, 2010 two were released. Continue to pray for those still missing.

Girls aged six and four fly home from Yemen kidnap ordeal

Friday, May 21st, 2010

Young Christian girls Lydia and Anna Hentschel were flown back to Germany after living for nearly a year as hostages in northern Yemen before being rescued by Saudi security forces. The fate of their parents, who served at a Protestant-run hospital before the kidnapping, is still unknown.

Christian Girls Kidnapped in Yemen Are Rescued

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

"Saudi Arabian and Yemeni security forces rescued two German girls yesterday, 11 months after the two young sisters, their parents, brother and four other Christians were taken hostage in Yemen," reports Compass Direct News.

Praise Report: Two Young Christian Hostages Freed in Yemen

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

Two German Christian girls held hostage in Yemen’s northern mountains have been rescued by Saudi security forces.

Update on Kidnapped Christians in Yemen

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Middle East Concern gives update and requests prayer for the nine foreigners kidnapped in Yemen.

Yemeni kidnappers demand 2 million dollars for freeing hostages

Friday, January 15th, 2010

"Yemeni tribesmen have demanded two million U.S. dollars for releasing a German family of five and a Briton whom have been held since June 2009."

Yemen Negotiates Release of Christian Hostages

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

Government Claims to Know Whereabouts of German Family and British Engineer

Islam’s Agenda: Domination of the World and Implementation of Sharia Law

Monday, January 11th, 2010

"The agenda of Muslim leaders [is] to impact every part of Western society with Islamic doctrine and the implementation of shari'a Law."

Yemen: Christians vulnerable in failing state

Sunday, January 10th, 2010

A call to pray for Christians in Yemen

Yemen: Abducted Christians Alive

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Six Christian hostages in Yemen are reportedly alive.

Yemen: Ray of Hope for Abducted Christians

Thursday, January 7th, 2010

"In the last 15 years at least 200 foreigners have been kidnapped in Yemen."

Yemen: Relatives of Kidnapped Christian Aid Workers Plead for their Release

Sunday, July 19th, 2009

Relatives of the kidnapped Christian aid workers pleaded for their release. Please pray for the release of all the aid workers who were kidnapped in northern Yemen.

Christians Denied Funerals in Yemen

Friday, July 17th, 2009

Officials in Yemen don’t allow for burial of Christians in the country. Names of deceased Christians must be changed to Muslim names before burial.

Slaughter of Foreigners in Yemen Bears Mark of Former Gitmo Detainee, Say Experts

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

According to experts, Al Qaeda is responsible for slaughtering of three Bible school students in Yemen.

Yemen Christian Expatriates Review Security Following Killings

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

Please pray for Christian expatriates in Yemen who are worried about their security following the recent killings of foreigners in the country.

Bible School Students Murdered in Yemen

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

Two Germany Bible school students are among foreigners kidnapped and murdered in Yemen.

  • Kids

    Care for orphans and hurting children

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  • Families

    Support wives and children of imprisoned or martyed pastors

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  • Pastors

    Spread the gospel by supporting underground pastors

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  • Women

    Save women from abduction and sexual exploitation

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  • Communities

    Help rebuild communities devastated by persecution

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Other Projects

other projects

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.