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Persecuted Christians: Most dangerous countries for Christians are largely Muslim

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Nine of the top ten on Open Door USA's new World Watch List of dangerous places for Christians are Muslim countries.

New reports show nine out of the ten most dangerous countries for Christians to live have a majority Muslim population.

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By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (
1/9/2015 (7 years ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: Christians, Persecuted, Muslim, ISIS, Iraq, Somalia, Syria

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) -  Open Doors USA, a Christian human rights organization, has monitored Christian persecution worldwide since the 1970s. Every year, they release a World Watch List (WWL) as an "annual survey of religious liberty conditions for Christians around the world."

2015's WWL follows recent years' track record. 90 percent of the top ten countries persecuting Christians have 50 percent or more Muslim populations, according to CNS News.

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Although North Korea remains number one on the list for the 13th year, the other nine are largely Muslim. Open Doors USA cites "Islamic extremism" as a main cause for Christian persecution.

"Christian persecution," says Open Doors USA in a CNS News article, "is any hostility experienced from the world as a result of one's identification as a Christian. Beatings, physical torture, confinement, isolation, rape, severe punishment, imprisonment, slavery, discrimination in education and employment, and even death are just a few examples of the persecution they experience on a daily basis."

Somalia, number two on the list, is full of Sunni Muslims, according to the State Department. Sunni Muslim is the "official" religion of Somalia with a 99.8 percent Muslim population.

Third place Iraq is 99 percent Muslim, according to the CIA's World Factbook. Syria, the fourth listed country, is 87 percent.

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"Approximately 100 million Christians are persecuted worldwide, making them one of the most persecuted religious groups in the world. Islamic extremism is the main source of persecution in 40 of the 50 countries on the 2015 World Watch List," said an Open Doors USA statement announcing the report. "Violence against Christians by the Islamic State and other Islamic terrorist groups increased in countries like Iraq and Syria. More than 70 percent of Christians have fled Iraq since 2003, and more than 700,000 Christians have left Syria since the civil war began in 2011."

Islamic countries have always rated high on Open Doors' list of most dangerous countries for Christians, and they don't consider it a coincidence.


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