Persecution of Christians in 2019 Near Genocide Levels

Rafael Augusto B. L. de Oliveira | @ancient_scrolls

Last year, Open Doors, a non-denominational organization, revealed that individuals murdered 4300 Christians for religious reasons in 2018. After the report though, governments and individuals across the world took relatively little action. This year has proven otherwise, as Christian murder rates are only increasing.

Unfortunately, it seems that the coming years may spell out even more danger as violence against Christians is nearing record highs. According to reports, Christianity may completely vanish from certain parts of the Middle East, thanks to the extreme persecution they face. Thus, many families must either flee their homeland or face certain death. 

Christians: The Most Persecuted Group in 2019 

“Evidence shows not only the geographic spread of anti-Christian persecution but also its increasing severity. In some regions, the level and nature of persecution are arguably coming close to meeting the international definition of genocide, according to that adopted by the UN”- Bishop of Truro

Bishop of Truro the Right Reverend Philip Mounstephen believes that one out of three people will suffer some kind of prejudice or persecution for religious reasons. 

An interim report he issued found that Christianity is at risk of being completely “wiped out” from parts of the Middle East. The report shows that Christians represent less than 1.5 % of the population. In Iraq, the Christian population fell from 1.5 million to a mere 120,000 in less than a decade.

The Boxing Day 2018 report was commissioned after the outcry over Asia Bibi. The Christian woman faced death threats after others accused her of blasphemy in Pakistan. 

Does Political Correctness Play a Role?

Many believe that the mainstream media has given less attention to this persecution than they should. Despite the fact that reports show Christians face as much persecution (if not more) than any other religions. Yet, it largely happens in other countries such as those in the Middle East. So, it does not receive the same attention as persecution of other religions in developed countries. 

Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt believes that the exaggeration of political correctness is to blame. Many may have grown up in a climate that Hunt would consider sensitive to minority religions in the United States. But many believe that this can cause us to forget the treatment minority religions in other countries receive. In the Middle East and some other Asian countries, Christianity is a mark far more dangerous than Islam at home.

“Whether it is in authoritarian regimes, or bigotry masked in the mistaken guise of religion, reports like the one launched today remind us that there are many places in which Christians face appalling levels of violence, abuse, and harassment”- Jeremy Hunt

Lack of Interest

While people in the developed world have the privilege of living in this façade, Christians scattered around the world living below the poverty line fear for their lives on a daily basis. Despite this, governments and the media alike have given them little support. Hunt thinks that “there is a misplaced worry that it is somehow colonialist to talk about a religion that was associated with colonial powers rather than the countries that we marched into as colonizers”. 

He added that many governments were asleep over the persecution of Christians. But he believes that recent reports of hatred against Christians and the terrorist attacks that killed 250 Christians in Sri Lanka helped to wake up the western world about this issue.


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