The numerous faces of Christian persecution across the world
Persecutions faced by Christians across the world have different forms - from the violence of Islamists (Sahel, Central Asia), from forced recruitment (e.g. in Eritrea), civil war (Sudan), state repression (Iran), expulsion (Myanmar) or family oppression.
In China, the Communist authorities require its citizens to become more conformist with the state ideology. The situation is relatively similar in countries such as Vietnam or Cuba. All areas of daily life are restricted, freedom of speech and the practice of faith are restricted, religious leaders are committed to supporting the regime, sophisticated surveillance devices are installed in church halls, and biblical applications and access to the Bible are blocked.
By contrast, in neighbouring India, a wave of violence that is permitted and even encouraged by the government, the situation of Christians and other minorities is also determined by targeted disinformation and propaganda in the media.
Often times, the coronavirus exacerbates the persecution of Christians. On the one hand, focusing solely on the pandemic contributes to the fact that the problem remains insufficiently illuminated worldwide. On the other hand, regimes in many places are deliberately using anti-covid restrictions to discriminate Christians.
For example, in Qatar and Algeria, groups of Christians have been banned from gathering together for prayer at home, even after the lockdown is lifted, while in China restrictions have recently been used as an excuse to prevent the celebration of Christmas. Moreover, in many countries the economic situation of many Christians, who often belong to the poorer sections of the population, has dramatically worsened as a result of the crisis caused by sanitary restrictions.