Fresh move to prosecute IS for genocide

Destroyed market in the town of Bartella, 15km east of Mosul, which was liberated from IS by Iraqi forces in October 2016. (Photo World Watch Monitor)
Campaigners have welcomed a bill designed to facilitate the prosecution of Islamic State jihadists for genocide against Christians, Yazidis and other minorities in Iraq and Syria. Complaining that efforts to encourage the British government to accuse IS of genocide had received “nothing but rebuttals and refusals”, Lord Alton, a Catholic, . . . Read More

Rights group tells Russia to ‘properly respect’ religious freedom

Rights group tells Russia to ‘properly respect’ religious freedom
Religious freedom advocate ADF International is today (7 March) filing a third-party brief with the European Court of Human Rights, arguing “for the right to religious freedom to be properly respected in Russia”. (Such a brief is a statement by a third party, usually an NGO or academic, which has . . . Read More

Iranian Christians safe if ‘practise faith discreetly’ – European Court of Human Rights

Activists in the Swiss capital of Bern raise awareness of religious persecution of Christians around the world (2014). (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
The European Court of Human Rights ruled last month that an Iranian who sought asylum in Switzerland based on religious grounds could be deported to his home country because his life was not in danger, despite various reports detailing how Iran persecutes religious minorities and converts to Christianity. Human Rights . . . Read More

Muslim asylum seekers find shelter in Germany’s churches

A church in Germany. (Photo: Paul Frankenstein via Flickr; CC 2.0).
Refugees at risk of deportation from Germany are finding shelter in Germany’s churches, and many are becoming Christians in the process, reports The Washington Post. More than a million refugees travelled to Germany in 2015, in the midst of Europe’s so-called “migrant crisis”, because it was known for its open . . . Read More

Sweden to Iranian convert it plans to deport: ‘It’s not our problem you chose to become a Christian’

Iranian convert, Aideen Strandsson, is still waiting for an appeal hearing after her asylum request in Sweden was rejected. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
An Iranian convert to Christianity has been refused asylum in Sweden, placing her at risk of deportation and “torture and rape” in jail in her home country. Aideen Strandsson, 37, who was baptised in Sweden in 2014, said officials at the country’s Migration Board did not believe her life would . . . Read More

‘Thousands’ of Iranians claiming asylum in Europe as converts to Christianity

‘Thousands’ of Iranians claiming asylum in Europe as converts to Christianity
Thousands of Iranian asylum-seekers across Europe are turning to Christianity, though observers are not convinced that all claims of conversion are genuine. A BBC documentary, Praying for Asylum, tells the story of a number of Iranian asylum-seekers in the Netherlands who say they have become Christians and would be exposed . . . Read More

Persecution ‘key driver of displacement’ says UNHCR, voicing concerns about returns

Persecution ‘key driver of displacement’ says UNHCR, voicing concerns about returns
More people are currently displaced through conflict and persecution than at any time since the Second World War. According to the Global Trends report, published by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), 65.6 million people were forcibly displaced at the end of 2016. The report noted that the number of refugee returns . . . Read More

European migrant deals ‘could put victims of religious persecution at risk’

Iranian migrants line up for prayer alongside other members of the congregation at the Dk Live church in Dunkirk
New deals aimed at reducing the number of migrants reaching Europe’s shores could endanger the lives of people fleeing religious persecution, the European Evangelical Alliance (EEA) has warned. The Partnership Framework on Migration was launched last year as the European Commission’s response to member states’ requests for a strategic approach . . . Read More

African mission leader searches for positives despite deadly surge of jihadist violence

African mission leader searches for positives despite deadly surge of jihadist violence
Attacks attributed to radical Islamic groups are happening on a weekly, or even daily, basis in Africa, posing security concerns across a vast swathe of the continent. The phenomenon has dramatically affected Church activities in various regions. But Rev. Reuben E. Ezemadu, Coordinator of the Movement for African National Initiatives . . . Read More