Persecution of Christians has intensified in 2016 — for the third year in a row. Worldwide persecution is subjected to more than two hundred million Christians, or one in twelve. According to the new world watch list of the organization “Open doors USA”, the most dangerous place for Christians is North Korea. But the most repressive countries in the list are Muslim. Believers are subjected to torture, beheadings, rape and lose their homes. In organization “Open doors USA” I hope that trump will pay attention to the persecution of Christians in the first 100 days in office. More about this will tell Kristin Wright — Director of human rights organization “Open doors USA”.
MAN: well, Christine, let’s go over the list. It is headed by North Korea, and this is not surprising, right?
Yes, nothing. For 25 years, North Korea is one of the countries that are often spearheaded by the world watch list. Of course, now it is the most dangerous country in the world for Christians. Although, of course, the list of 50 countries where there are very severe persecution.
MHN: Let’s talk about victims of genocide. Why the United States does not help the Christian refugees from ISIS?
You know, it’s a very good question. I think now there are a lot of problems for displaced Christians around the world. When you look at the world watchlist 2017, we can conclude that Islamic extremism is the driving force behind persecution in 35 countries of 50. We see Christians driven from their homes — and not just in Iraq, about which we have all heard in connection with ISIS, but also in countries such as Nigeria, where Boko Haram and other extremist groups, expelled Christians from their homes.
MAN: well, most of the countries at the top of the list are Muslim. What can the world do to put pressure on these countries to protect Christians?
I think now more than ever it is important that Christians pray and remember their persecuted brothers and sisters. But, you know, I am an optimist. With the coming to power of trump and I hope that the new administration will treat the issue seriously and will work to resolve the problem of persecution of Christians and other religious minorities, taking important steps within the first one hundred days.
MHN: So you think that the trump will otherwise treat the persecution of Christians compared to how it did in the Obama administration?
Of course, I hope. We’ve all seen how the Obama administration basically simply turned a blind eye to this important issue — not only on the persecution of Christians, but many other religious minorities across the Middle East. At the same time, making our global watchlist, we concluded that 2016 was the worst year in recent history for Christians worldwide. So it’s time to take action.
MAN: Incredible. What Christians all over the earth can do to help? Of course, to pray, isn’t it?
Prayer is the main thing. But I would also advise you to find information. Go to the website opendoorsusa.org. There you will be able to view all world watchlist, and find information about what you can do for each of those 50 countries included in this list. You can also sign a petition addressed to the new administration to take important steps to protect religious freedom around the world during the first hundred days.
MHN: We have already mentioned North Korea and some Muslim countries that are most oppressive. Could you name some other such countries?
Of course. In Washington, we with great reverence took one of the pastor from Syria. He came to us straight from Damascus on one event and shared her personal story and the tragedy that befell him and the whole community. So Syria is one such country, and I ask you to remember her in prayers. But there is another country that is in my heart a special place — Nigeria. Last year I had the honor to meet with the fathers of the abducted girls in Nigeria. In this country Christians are subjected to terrible atrocities, and on a daily basis. And she is now on 12th place in the world watch list.
MAN: well, thank you for this information. Pray. Christine Wright of the international organization “Open doors”. Thank you for joining us.