MP claims Christians persecuted

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MP Joël Voordewind sadly noted at the appearance of the Christian persecution rankings by Open Doors, that in the past year the persecution of Christians has again increased worldwide. This increase can be explained by, among other things, the fact that states with a (very) weak government can no longer protect their citizens. 'In these countries (including Somalia, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and increasingly Pakistan), radical Islāmic movements take advantage of the absence of a strong government. Persecuting Christians seems to be an invariable topic on the planner of these extremist groups,' said Voordewind.

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At the same time our current Minister of Foreign Affairs, Frans Timmermans, pays less attention to religious persecution. The Open Doors ranking shows that this is not justified, according to the MP.

'I have visited many of these countries in recent years. The personal stories of the victims of religious persecution always stay with me. This year the ChristenUnie will again make a continued effort to attract attention to the position of persecuted Christians and other threatened minorities. I will visit Egypt this month. There too, an increasing number of Christians falls victim to persecution by Muslim extremists. Churches are burned, Christians are raped or murdered and virtually no one is arrested for this. I will urge Minister Timmermans to specifically include this ranking list in the formation of foreign policy, both at national and EU level.'

This ranking shows once again that it is absolutely incomprehensible that Netherlands extradites asylum seekers to countries such as Somalia, Iraq, and Afghanistan. 'Countries where it is already dangerous for the "ordinary" citizen, let alone when you adhere to the Christian faith' said Voordewind. 'Pakistani Christians can oftentimes not rely on asylum in the Netherlands either, while the situation has deteriorated enormously there. I plead to ease the requirements for asylum seekers from these countries. State Secretary Teeven can at least start to no longer extradite Christian asylum seekers to countries on the Open Door ranking list, in any case not to the countries in the top 10.