Afghanistan is now the No. 1 persecutor of Christians in the world after President Biden’s deadly withdrawal last year, according to Open Doors.
Overall, Christian persecution rose at an “alarming rate” last year with more than 360 million believers worldwide facing high levels of persecution and discrimination for their faith, amounting to 1 in 7 followers of Christ, the watchdog reports in its 2022 World Watch List released Wednesday.
Worst of all is Afghanistan where every Christian is now either in hiding or on the run from persecution.
“Conditions for Christians have never been more dangerous,” said Curry. “We must take decisive action now to prevent a religious genocide against Christians in Afghanistan.”
The punishment for being Christian in Afghanistan is death, where the Taliban labels believers “infidels” or traitors, enemies of the state, enemies of the tribe and even the community.
Despite North Korea moving out of the top spot, its persecution has not lessened since last year.
“People should not interpret this to mean that North Korea has gotten any safer for religious minorities. In fact, the situation there is worse,” said Open Doors USA President and CEO, David Curry. “That should tell you everything you need to know about how bad conditions are for Christians who remain in Afghanistan.”
According to Open Doors, Afghanistan is followed by North Korea, Somalia, Libya, Yemen, Eritrea, Nigeria, Pakistan, Iran, and India as the top ten countries most dangerous for followers of Christ.