SANTA ANA, Calif., April 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Nearly 70 percent of the world's 6.8 billion people live in countries with little or no freedom of religion, including many countries in the Middle East and Africa.
The purge of centuries-old Christian communities in Middle East countries like Iraq and Iran and the dramatic increase of persecution in African countries like Egypt and Nigeria are putting Christians and other minorities under unprecedented siege. On Sunday, gunmen reportedly killed at least 21 Christians and wounded 22 in two attacks during worship services held at a university and church in northern Nigeria.
Dr. Carl Moeller, president/CEO of Open Doors USA; Nina Shea, director for religious freedom at the Hudson Institute; Rev. Dr. Katharine Rhodes Henderson, president of Auburn Theological Seminary in New York City; Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein, director of Interfaith Affairs for the Simon Wiesenthal Center; and Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Associate Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, will be among speakers addressing the issue of embattled Christian communities during a press conference on Thursday, May 3, at 10 a.m. at the National Press Club, Bloomberg Room, in Washington, D.C.
Last month the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) included Egypt, Eritrea, Iraq, Iran, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Sudan among 16 countries on its "Countries of Particular Concern" list. The report said that "across the global landscape, the pivotal human right of religious freedom was under escalating attack."
Open Doors is an international organization that for over five decades has covertly come along side Christians in 60 restrictive and dangerous countries, campaigning for their freedom to believe, from the gulags in North Korea to the halls of Congress. To partner with Open Doors USA, call toll free at 888-5-BIBLE-5 (888-524-2535) or go to www.OpenDoorsUSA.org.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Jerry Dykstra, Open Doors USA Media Relations Director,
at 616-915-4117 or [email protected];
Marcial Lavina, Assistant Director of Public Relations, Simon Wiesenthal Center,
at 310-772-2455 or [email protected]
SOURCE Open Doors USA