About us

World Watch Monitor reports the story of Christians around the world under pressure for their faith.

Freedom of belief, guaranteed by the UN Declaration of Human Rights, plays a critical part in the unfolding, complex story of the 21st Century. We exist to tell this part of the story with accuracy and authority. We respect and uphold everyone’s right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; Our focus is on the global Christian Church.   

World Watch Monitor is particularly concerned with reporting on the underlying causes of persecution. We aim to connect the dots to reveal the forces behind acts of violence and injustice.

We strive to be the most trusted and consulted source of news about Christians who suffer for their faith. World Watch Monitor editors commission journalists around the world to report on persecution, from breaking news to in-depth analysis. We seek authentic voices on the ground, always with the aim to place such incidents within a broader narrative to explain context.  We are committed to classic journalistic principles and practices: We pursue truth; employ the discipline of verification; maintain independence; keep the news in perspective; and publish journalism that aims to be transparent.

However, wherever the freedom to believe is denied, there is fear, secrecy and often danger. So, we will name our sources when we can, and will protect them with anonymity when we must. Our reporters, whose work can anger those who oppress minority Christians, often work in places where police protection cannot always be expected, where orthodoxy can be enforced at the end of a gun, and where the rule of law doesn’t always run as it should. For those reasons, in most cases we do not publish the name of a story’s author. But neither do we make up fake reporter names.

We know the story of the Christian Church under pressure is larger than World Watch Monitor’s engagement with it, so we link to credible news and information about persecution that is published by others. Our goal is to be a valuable guide to the full breadth of this important story.

The WWM Team

Julia Bicknell has had over 30 years’ experience in the BBC, mainly BBC World Service and BBC World. She was a correspondent from Pakistan, has lived in Vietnam, and has spent extended time in Africa.

 

 

 

 

Jeff Thomas has spent 26 years in daily newspapers in the U.S., as a reporter, editor and executive editor.

 

 

 


 

Steve Dew-Jones joined the WWM Team as a journalist in 2013. He has written two books – about long overland journeys in Asia and the Americas, respectively – and has worked for a range of newspapers, magazines and websites in London.

 

 

 

 

Lauren Gunias has worked and trained as a journalist in both the United States and United Kingdom. Prior to joining WWM, she worked for the BBC, CNN International and WOUB News.

 

 

 

Using our material

World Watch Monitor news stories, photos and video may be republished in whole, or cited in unedited excerpts, provided that World Watch Monitor is credited as the source. Please do not republish photos or other media that we have credited to a source other than World Watch Monitor. We welcome linking to our site.

About links

Persecution is a story as old and wide as the Church, well beyond the ability of any single news service to report it completely. That's why World Watch Monitor frequently links to information sources around the Web.

We select links to Web pages that contain specific content that we have reviewed and believe to have value to World Watch Monitor readers. Such content may include, but is not limited to:

  • News articles published by other agencies that contain pertinent information not originally reported by World Watch Monitor
  • Reports, white papers, research, proclamations, statutes, and other original-source documents issued by governments, NGOs, advocacy groups, etc.
  • Background information about a person, place or topic

When a World Watch Monitor article makes reference to an organization, a link to that organization's home page may be provided, as a way to make it easier for readers to learn more about that organization.

However, we cannot be responsible for the content of external websites. This is because:

  • World Watch Monitor does not produce them or maintain them
  • World Watch Monitor cannot change them
  • They can be changed without World Watch Monitor's knowledge

In some cases, we may link to a website that coincidentally includes advertisements or commercial services, such as online purchases. World Watch Monitor has no connection to those commercial services, and does not necessarily endorse them.

A World Watch Monitor link to an external website should not be understood to be an endorsement of that website, any views expressed on the site, the site's owners, or any products and services displayed on their site.

Catching Our Eye

On trial in Iran for celebrating Christmas

An Iranian pastor is expected to stand trial in Iran soon, five months after his arrest by security forces for “participating in an illegal gathering” as he celebrated Christmas.

Victor Bet-Tamraz led the Tehran Pentecostal Assyrian Church before it was shut down by Iran's Ministry of Interior in March 2009.

Two converts to Christianity were also arrested. All were charged with conducting illegal evangelism and kept mostly in solitary confinement in Evin prison, before being released on bail in February and March.

Bet-Tamraz has had difficulty in finding a lawyer willing to act as his defence counsel. Some lawyers have experienced a backlash after representing Christians in court.

Source: MEC

Kidnapped priest still missing

A Jesuit priest reportedly kidnapped in Syria last week by Islamic extremists is still missing, with no news of his whereabouts.

Father Jacques Mourad was abducted in Qaryatayn on 21 May by four suspected Islamic State terrorists riding motorbikes, reported Aid to the Church in Need.

A spokesperson from Open Doors International, a charity which supports Christians under pressure for their faith, said a member of his congregation was also kidnapped. However, the spokesperson said there is no news of their whereabouts, nor is it known who abducted them.

Pakistan: 106 charged with murder

Pakistan has charged 106 people with murder, more than six months after a Christian couple were beaten and burnt to death by a mob, reports the BBC.

Shahzad Masih, 26, and his five-month pregnant wife Shama, 24, were accused by the mob of burning pages of a Qur’an, as reported by World Watch Monitor in November.

In December, a coroner said they were still alive when a mob of at least 400 people threw them into a large kiln.

The BBC reports that another 32 suspects are still at large, while three Muslim clerics are accused of inciting the mob to violence.

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