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Top Countries that Persecuted Christians in 2024

Almost 5,000 Christians were killed for their faith in 2023. Almost 4,000 were abducted. Nearly 15,000 churches were attacked or closed. And more than 295,000 Christians were forcibly displaced from their homes because of their faith.

The latest annual accounting from Open Doors ranks the top 50 countries where it is most dangerous and difficult to be a Christian. Nigeria joined China, India, Nicaragua, and Ethiopia as the countries driving the significant increase in attacks on churches.

Overall, 365 million Christians live in nations with high levels of persecution or discrimination. That’s 1 in 7 Christians worldwide, including 1 in 5 believers in Africa, 2 in 5 in Asia, and 1 in 16 in Latin America.

And for only the fourth time in three decades of tracking, all 50 nations scored high enough to register “very high” persecution levels. Syria and Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, entered the tier of “extreme” persecution.

When the list was first issued in 1993, only 40 countries scored sufficiently high to warrant tracking. This year, 78 countries qualified.

North Korea ranked No. 1, as it has every year except for 2022 when Afghanistan briefly displaced it. The rest of the top 10: Somalia (No. 2), Libya (No. 3), Eritrea (No. 4), Yemen (No. 5), Nigeria (No. 6), Pakistan (No. 7), Sudan (No. 8), Iran (No. 9), and Afghanistan (No. 10).

The deadliest country for Christians was Nigeria, with more than 4,100 Christians killed for their faith—82 percent of the global tally.

Editor’s Note: You can view the full report here.

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