From The Church Times-
RELIGIOUS nationalism is driving soaring levels of anti-Christian persecution across Asia and the Indian subcontinent, Open Doors warns this year, as it publishes its 25th World Watch List. The charity campaigns on behalf of persecuted Christians.
The rebirth of Hindu and Buddhist nationalism in the 1990s was “the trend the world refused to notice”, the charity says. Its report, which ranks the 50 countries in which it is most difficult to practise Christianity, calculates that Christians are being killed for their faith in more countries than ever before: 38.
India was ranked higher than ever before, at 15, in the wake of the election of President Modi and rising religious nationalism. Open Doors researchers recorded more than 15 violent attacks on Christians every week in 2016. The persecution is partly, they write, “a reaction to the rapid growth of the Indian Church”. Pastors have been beaten, churches burned, and converts harassed. The second biggest increase in persecution is reported in Bangladesh, owing to attacks by terrorists linked to Islamic State.