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Country rank   5
Last year’s rank   7
Region   Arabian Peninsula
Population   30 911 000
Christians   A few thousand (Open Doors estimate)
Main Religion   Islam

5Yemen

Yemeni Christians are mostly converts from Islam who must live out their faith in secret as conversion from Islam to Christianity is forbidden. Christian converts are pressured by both the government and their communities to recant their faith in Jesus. They might be arrested or interrogated for their faith, and face threats from family and extremists.

Yemen is caught in the greatest humanitarian crises in the world, and all Yemenis suffer – but Yemeni Christians are additionally vulnerable since emergency relief is mostly distributed through local Muslim leaders and mosques. These groups have been accused of discriminating against anyone who is not considered to be a devout Muslim.

What has changed this year? The persecution against Christians in Yemen has continued to be extreme for years, and it’s risen two spots on the 2022 World Watch List. Christians in Yemen continue to face physical and mental abuse, sexual harassment, rape, as well as forced marriages and expulsion for faith-related reasons. Additionally, the presence of Islamic extremist groups, the continuing destabilisation of the Covid-19 pandemic and the civil war – make daily life a struggle for most of Yemen’s Christians.

Meet “Naser”

“We, the believers, carry hope that helps us with the certainty that tomorrow will be better and that by the will of our Lord, we will pass through this and all the anxieties and fears surrounding us.”

pray

Pray for Yemen

  • Pray for the Yemeni people and the Yemeni government. The civil war has lasted for nearly a decade, and the brutality and the humanitarian crisis it has caused have only grown worse due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Pray for peace, stability and an openness to letting all Yemenis, regardless of religion, live their lives in peace and hope.
  • Pray for the secret Christians in Yemen who live under constant threat. Ask God to give them courage, wisdom, and boldness, that they would know how to best live out the Gospel.
  • Yemeni people can now find out more about Jesus via television, radio and the internet. Pray for all people in Yemen who are secretly searching for truth. Pray that they will find the right channels to learn about Jesus and pray that they will become followers of Him.

What does Open Doors do to help Christians on the Arabian Peninsula?

Open Doors supports the Body of Christ around the Arabian Peninsula through prayer, the distribution of biblical resources and the training of believers and pastors. To protect the people involved, we do not make detailed information on these programmes public.

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