Afghanistan overtakes North Korea as worst persector of Christians worldwide
Open Doors' 2022 World Watch list reveals that 360 million Christians face persecution because of their faith across the world.This is 20 million more than a year earlier.
Afghanistan, now ruled by the Taliban, was classified as the most dangerous country for Christians. It is now ahead of North Korea, which had topped the list for 20 years and is now relegated to second place, although the country’s extreme persecution of Christians has also increased.
“The conditions in Afghanistan after the fall of Kabul are shocking, because all Christians living in the underground are threatened with death,” said managing director of Open Doors Austria Kurt Igler in an interview with the Austrian agency Kathpress. “The new Taliban government has gained access to files that identify converts to Christianity. Moreover, their fighters are actively searching for Christians by going door to door,” he added.
Based on first-hand information that for baptised men, the detection of their faith is almost certain death, while women and girls are either forcibly married off to Taliban fighters or raped and abducted. Believing in Christ is almost impossible in Afghanistan. Therefore, most Christians in this country have fled to rural regions or to refugee camps in neighbouring countries, where they remain in danger.