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25_Nepal

NEPAL

#25
Region South Asia
Leader President Bidhya Devi Bhandari
Population 29 187 000
Christian 4%
Main Religion Hinduism
Government Federal Democratic Republic
Rank 25
Score 64
Previous Rank -
Previous Score 53

“Whoever fears the Lord has a secure fortress, and for their children it will be a refuge.”

Nepal was not on the World Watch List last year, but its score increased significantly (with 11 points) placing it in the Top 50 for 2018. Persecution stems mainly from Hindu radicals, with ethnic tensions adding to the pressure in the background. The situation for Christians in Nepal deteriorated markedly, across the board, and is due to a strong rise in religious nationalism. Government officials, Hindu priests, Hindu political parties and family, friends, and community have all stepped up pressure.

Most of the Christian persecution in Nepal comes from Hindu radical groups who want to turn Nepal into a Hindu state again. These radical Hindu groups have close ties with Hindutva groups in neighbouring India. Persecution used not to be driven by the government, but since 2015 a new constitution has been adopted, limiting freedom of religion. On 8 August 2017, the Nepalese parliament also passed anti-conversion legislation, which was signed into law by the president on 16 October 2017. Another sign of a deteriorating situation for Christians.

Through church partners and volunteers, Open Doors focusses on providing Bibles and Christian literature, discipleship, livelihood and community development, adult literacy programmes, urgent aid and relief for persecuted Christians.

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