The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom says Christians and religious minorities face increased persecution in the aftermath of U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.
The relief group Barnabas Fund, quoting a recent USCIRF report, said the commission wants the U.S. government to deem Afghanistan a “Country of Particular Concern.” Christians are being targeted by both the Taliban, which took control of Afghanistan after the U.S. withdrew in 2021, and the Islamic State Khorasan Province.
The Taliban considers all Christians to be apostates from Islam and has gone door to door looking for them, according to USCIRF. Christians also risk violence from Muslim family, friends and neighbors.
Reconvert or be killed
The Taliban says Christians must reconvert to Islam, leave or be killed, USCIRF stated.
Further targeting of Christians resulted from NATO’s International Security Assistance Force support of Shariah in 2010, the report said, noting Western governments have failed to assist Afghans adequately. USCIRF recommended the U.S. expand its refugee admissions program for Afghans at risk of religious persecution, Barnabas Fund noted.
Afghanistan is No. 1 on Open Doors’ 2022 World Watch List of places most difficult to be a Christian.