Tuesday, April 22, 2008


1. Korea, North
2. Saudi Arabia
3. Iran
4. Maldives
5. Bhutan
6. Yemen
7. Afghanistan
8. Laos
9. Uzbekistan
10. China
11. Eritrea
12. Somalia
13. Turkmenistan
14. Comoros
15. Pakistan
16. Qatar
17. Vietnam
18. Chechnya
19. Egypt
20. Zanzibar Islands
21. Iraq
22. Azerbaijan
23. Libya
24. Mauritania
25. Burma (Myanmar)
26. Sudan (North)
27. Oman
28. Cuba
29. Brunei
30. India
31. Algeria
32. Nigeria (North)
33. Djibouti
34. Turkey
35. Kuwait
36. Sri Lanka
37. Tajikistan
38. United Arab Emirates
39. Jordan
40. Morocco
41. Belarus
42. Palestinian Territories
43. Ethiopia
44. Syria
45. Bahrain
46. Tunisia
47. Indonesia
48. Bangladesh
49. Kenya (North East)
50. Colombia (Conflict Areas)

Bishop warns of no-go zones for Christians
By: Toby Cohen.

THE Bishop of Shrewsbury, the Rt Rev Alan Smith, has warned Christians from travelling to certain holiday hotspots following a report on global Christian persecution.

Charity Open Doors has published its 2008 World Watch List ranking the countries with the worst records of persecuting Christians in the last year. Popular destinations the Maldives and Laos were in the top 8, with India, Turkey and Morocco in the top 40. Egypt is ranked two places above Iraq.

The Egpytian tourist bureau said: “There is absolutely not persecution of Christians in Egypt. We have a strong Christian, Coptic, population. We have many Christian monuments. I don’t know why these people say that.” Bishop Smith said:
“Part of our Christian responsibility is to learn about other parts of the world and to work for truth and justice. We also need to support our fellow Christians in other countries, many of whom are suffering or whose lives are under threat.”


The High Commission’s website reads:
“Sun, sand and sea, a thousand ‘Robinson Crusoe’ islands, massive lagoons with different depths and infinite shades of blue and turquoise, dazzling underwater coral gardens; a perfect natural combination for the ideal tropical holiday destination. However there is more to the Maldives than just that.”

“Islam is the official state religion and all citizens must be Muslims. Sharia law is observed, which prohibits the conversion from Islam to another religion. A convert could lose citizenship. It is prohibited to practice any other religion than Islam, which is considered to be an important tool in stimulating national unity and maintenance of the government’s power,”
says the report by Open Doors of the Maldives, fourth on its list.

The chief executive of Open Doors UK and Ireland, Eddie Lyle, said:
“At best Christians living in countries featuring on the World Watch List 2008 can expect discrimination in the workplace, in education, physical and emotional abuse or a ban on holding church services."

“At worst, and this is a regular occurrence for Christians living in any of the worst ten nations, they may be thrown into jail and – all too often – are murdered.”

A spokesperson for Thompson Holidays said they did not think this was going to affect the way people booked their holidays: “I don’t see why it should. Not unless more people found out about it.”

Pertinent Links:

1) Bishop warns of no-go zones for Christians

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