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23 Palestinian Territories


Region Middle East
Leader President Mahmoud Abbas
Population 4 928 000
Christian 1.4%
Main Religion Islam
Government Federal Parliamentary Republic
Rank 23
Score 64
Previous Rank 24
Previous Score 62

The dynamics of Christian persecution in the Palestinian Territories are complex. Christians are squeezed in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, their ethnicity causing many restrictions from the Israeli side and their religion putting them in a minority position within the Palestinian community. The territories are effectively under different governments. The West Bank’s ruling Fatah party is formally based on secular principles and Christians enjoy several rights. Though Christians are largely tolerated by Islamist Hamas, the rights of Christians are neither upheld nor protected in Gaza. The total number of Christians has been decreasing in both areas over time due to emigration and lower birth rates.

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