May 4, 2019 - 13:40 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - The persecution of Christians in parts of the world is at near "genocide" levels, according to a report ordered by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt, BBC reports.
The review, led by the Bishop of Truro the Right Reverend Philip Mounstephen, estimated that one in three people suffer from religious persecution.
Christians were the most persecuted religious group, it found.
Hunt said he felt that "political correctness" had played a part in the issue not being confronted.
The interim report said the main impact of "genocidal acts against Christians is exodus" and that Christianity faced being "wiped out" from parts of the Middle East.
It warned the religion "is at risk of disappearing" in some parts of the world, pointing to figures which claimed Christians in Palestine represent less than 1.5% of the population, while in Iraq they had fallen from 1.5 million before 2003 to less than 120,000.
"Evidence shows not only the geographic spread of anti-Christian persecution, but also its increasing severity," the Bishop wrote.
"In some regions, the level and nature of persecution is arguably coming close to meeting the international definition of genocide, according to that adopted by the UN."
The foreign secretary commissioned the review on Boxing Day 2018 amid an outcry over the treatment of Asia Bibi, a Christian woman who faced death threats after being acquitted of blasphemy in Pakistan.
Its findings come after more than 250 people were killed and more than 500 wounded in attacks at hotels and churches in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday.