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Persecution of Christians coming close to genocide levels

The persecution of Christians in some regions of the world is coming close to meeting the international definition of genocide, according to a report commissioned by British Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt.

The interim report, led by the Bishop of Truro the Right Reverend Philip Mountstephen, has highlighted the geographical spread of anti-Christian persecution and it’s increasing severity.

The independent review on the global persecution of Christians has estimated that one third of the world’s population suffers from religious persecution in some form, with Christians being the most persecuted group.

"The main impact of such genocidal acts against Christians is exodus," the report said.  "Christianity now faces the possibility of being wiped-out in parts of the Middle East where its roots go back furthest." 

Hunt commissioned the report on Boxing Day 2018 amid an outcry of the treatment of Asia Bibi, a Christian woman who faced death threats after being acquitted of blasphemy in Pakistan.

“What we have forgotten in that atmosphere of political correctness is actually the Christians that are being persecuted are some of the poorest people on the planet,” Jeremy Hunt said in response to the findings.

The reports findings come after more than 250 people were killed and more than 500 wounded in a series of bomb attacks at churches and hotels in Batticoloa and Colombo.

The review will publish its final findings in June 2019. 

Read the interim report here.