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AFGHANISTAN: Report Highlights Extreme Difficulties for Christians

The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) conveyed on their latest factsheet the “dire consequences [for Christians], including death, if discovered by the Taliban.”

The factsheet comes at a time when numerous reports and international voices are raising severe concern over the Taliban’s treatment of religious minority communities since the chaotic pull-out of US troops in August.

For decades, Afghan Christians have lived in fear for their lives as the overwhelming majority of the community, numbering 8,000 to 12,000 believers, are converts from Islam making them subject to Shariah’s most deadly penalties as interpreted by the Taliban.

At the beginning of the withdrawal and Taliban takeover, reports surfaced of numerous Christians receiving phone calls and threatening messages from people thought to be Taliban members.

“Christians have received threatening phone calls, while one leader of a house church network received a letter on 12 August from Taliban militants threatening him and his family. Some Christians have turned their phones off and moved to undisclosed locations," said the Commission.

The church operates as a loose network of house churches throughout the country in near-complete secrecy due to their decision to leave Islam and follow Jesus.

The USCIRF factsheet concluded, “While religious freedom conditions in the country were poor under the previous government, these conditions have already worsened and have become dire under the Taliban and are likely to continue to deteriorate.”

  • Earnestly pray for our brothers and sisters in Afghanistan, that the Lord would shield them from harm.

  • Ask God to frustrate the plans of the Taliban. Pray too that He would reveal Himself to many Taliban members.

  • Pray for opportunities for the church to meet to encourage one another.

Source: Voice of the Martyrs AU, International Christian Concern

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