WHO IS THE LEADER OF YEMEN?
President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi is the leader of Yemen. The Houthis claim that their revolutionary council in Sanaa, headed by Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, is the legitimate government, but the international community backs Mr Hadi.
HOW MANY CHRISTIANS LIVE IN YEMEN?
There are just a few thousand Christians in Yemen, making them a tiny minority out of a population of 28.9 million.
Before civil war broke out, most of the Christians in Yemen were expatriates, but many have left to escape the violence. Most of the Christians left in Yemen now are Yemeni Christians, and there has been a growth in numbers which means that more local advice and support is available for new Christians than before. However, they must keep their faith secret, which makes it difficult to know exactly how many there are.
WHY ARE CHRISTIANS PERSECUTED IN YEMEN?
Yemen is a strongly Islamic nation, and all Yemenis are considered Muslims. Leaving is Islam is forbidden – Muslims who decide to follow Jesus could face the death penalty. The war has allowed Islamic extremist groups to expand their operations in certain areas, leading to Christians being abducted and killed.
WHAT IS LIFE LIKE FOR CHRISTIANS IN YEMEN?
Christians in Yemen must keep their faith completely secret. It is seen as a huge source of shame for a family member to leave Islam, so believers from Muslim backgrounds run the risk of honour-killing or physical violence if their families or communities discover their faith.
As the war in Yemen continues, Christians also miss out when emergency aid is distributed. It is mostly distributed through Islamic organisations and local mosques, who allegedly discriminate against those who are not considered to be pious Muslims.
"Lord, help us as we are tired of this senseless war, the blood and the anxiety the people live under. Instead, we pray for the Kingdom of God to be established in Yemen."
- A prayer by a Yemeni believer
HOW CAN I HELP CHRISTIANS IN the arabian peninsula?
You can give to provide vital support
Open Doors supports the body of Christ on the Arabian Peninsula through organising prayer, distributing Scripture resources and training believers and pastors.
Give to support persecuted believers.
You can SPEAK OUT
Sign up for advocacy alerts for updates on how you can be a voice for our persecuted church family.
You can pray
Brother Andrew, the founder of Open Doors, says, “Our prayers can go where we cannot... There are no borders, no prison walls, no doors that are closed to us when we pray.”
A PRAYER FOR YEMEN
Lord Jesus, have mercy on our persecuted brothers and sisters in Yemen. Bring an end to the war and famine, and provide for those believers who miss out on relief aid because of their faith. Protect and strengthen Christians who are threatened and under pressure from their families and communities. Help them to keep shining as lights in the darkness.