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 For those reasons, in most cases we do not publish the name of a story’s author.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.






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:

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  • 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.

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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

Abandoned Syrian Christian leaders urge air strike

A Syrian Christian leader is urging the US to strike IS held positions following the news earlier this week that up to 220 Syrian Christians were kidnapped from Hassaka province.

“There is a need for immediate action similar to what took place in Kobani,” Bassam Ishak, president of the Syriac National Council of Syria, told the American Catholic News Service, referring to air strikes that helped the Kurds successfully drive out extremists from the city on the border with Turkey.

Ishak's appeal was echoed by Hassaka's Catholic Arcbishop Jacques Hindo who expressed a sense of abandonment "into the hands of Daesh [the Arabic name for Islamic State]".

“We have 100 Assyrian families who have taken refuge in Hassaka, but they have received no assistance either from the Red Crescent or from Syrian government aid workers, perhaps because they are Christians," Hindo added.

Source: Catholic Herald

'Turkey failed' 100+ Christians abducted by IS

The Syrian Catholic Archbishop of Hassaka-Nisibi has accused Turkey of preventing Christians from fleeing Syria to safety across the Turkish border, two days after Islamic State militants abducted at least 96 people. They lived in a cluster of villages in northeast Syria which had been under the control of Syrian Kurdish forces.

Bishop Jacques Behnan Hindo told Vatican Radio on Feb. 25 "Every day, families are emigrating from Damascus by plane because of the blockade we have around us," reported Agence France-Presse.

"In the north, Turkey allows through lorries, Daesh (IS) fighters, oil stolen from Syria, wheat and cotton. All of these can cross the border, but nobody [from the Christian community] can pass over."

The kidnapped Christians are part of Syria’s 30,000 Assyrian community, concentrated mostly in Hassaka province near the Turkish border. The BBC reports that the Syriac National Council of Syria has put the figure as high as 150, while Afram Yakoub of the Assyrian Federation of Sweden said sources on the ground told him that up to 285 people were missing, including 156 from the village of Tal Shamran and 90 from Tal al-Jazira.

Copts aid Egyptians evacuate Libya

The Coptic Church has set up a "crisis unit" in order to facilitate rapid evacuation and repatriation of Egyptians still present in Libya - starting with those most affected by the fighting.

Families of the expatriates have been urged to provide information to the Crisis Committee before Feb. 28.

According to sources consulted by Agenzia Fides, "the Crisis Committee, headed by Anba Raphael secretary of the Holy Synod, is collecting information from families of Copts who emigrated for reasons of work to Libya in view of arranging repatriation in coordination with Egyptian military and civil institutions."

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