There are 4.3 million Christians from a population of 54.3 million. The majority religion of Myanmar is Buddhism.
There is an increasing emphasis on Buddhism in Myanmar, to the exclusion of all other faiths. The persecution of Rohingya Muslims has been widely publicised, but less attention has been given to the continuing war affecting Kachin, Shan and Karen States, where the population is predominantly Christian.
More than 100,000 Christians have been forced to flee their homes because of intense fighting in Kachin and Shan States. They are still living in camps where they are denied access to food and healthcare.
It has become even clearer in the past year that radical Buddhist monks have the support of the Burmese army, and that the government’s attempts to counteract these radical monks are not working. In Thein’s village, he hasn’t been allowed to build a church in his own plot, and local authorities and neighbours sometimes interrupt and stop his congregation from worshipping. Churches are often monitored, and land grabbing from Christians is common.
Source: Open Doors UK
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