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Report: Anti-Christian “hate crimes” in Europe up 44% last year

Anti-Christian “hate crimes” increased by 44% in Europe last year according to a newly-released report, with arson attacks on Christian churches increasing by 75% between 2021 and 2022.

The data was released by the Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination Against Christians in Europe (OIDAC Europe), an organisation that monitors such intolerance and discrimination, as part of their Annual Report 2022/23. The report was released on Thursday the 16th of November, which was the International Day of Intolerance.

In 2022, OIDAC Europe reported 748 anti-Christian “hate crimes” across 30 different countries, ranging from arson attacks, graffiti, “desecrations” and thefts, to physical attacks, insults and threats.

The report noted a trend of increased arson attacks, which rose from 60 in 2021 to 105 in 2022. It also noted that “more hate crimes were perpetrated by radicalised members of ideological, political or religious groups that follow an anti-Christian narrative.”

OIDAC Europe’s Executive Director, Anja Hoffmann, claimed in a statement that the increase in “anti-Christian hate crimes,” especially in vandalism, is connected to a rise in “extremist motivation” and “a higher acceptance of the targeting of churches in society.”

“The criminalisation of expressions of mainstream religious teachings – which do not incite violence or hatred – as ‘hate speech’ is dangerous on various levels,” she said.

“It stigmatises legitimate conscience-related convictions and at the same time weakens the severity of actual incitement to hatred.

“Furthermore silencing Christian voices in public undermines the plurality of democratic western societies and essentially renders a free discourse impossible.”

Additionally, the group said that expressing Christian views had led to numerous individuals losing their jobs in 2022.

“Over the past year, several Christians lost their jobs, faced suspension, or criminal court cases for expressing non-violent religious views in public,” the group said in a statement.

“Christians who adhered to the traditional teachings of their churches were targeted or even prosecuted for allegedly committing ‘hate speech.’”

Specifically it named the dismissals of the teachers Ben Dybowski and Joshua Sutcliffe, and the school chaplain Rev. Bernard Randall.

The group went on to hit out at so-called “buffer zones,” particularly in the UK, which it says “criminalises prayer.”

“There have also been legal limitations on freedom of religion and assembly through so-called “buffer zone” bills, especially in the UK, which criminalise prayer and religious manifestations around abortion clinics,” the group said.

“Particularly striking was the arrest of Isabel Vaughan-Spruce who was interrogated by the police when standing silently in one of the ‘buffer zones’, and asked whether she was ‘praying in her mind.’”

Notably, a bill seeking to implement similar “buffer zones” just passed in Ireland’s Dáil overwhelmingly.

Some of the OIDAC figures roughly align with data released the same day from the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) – a major intergovernmental organisation whose members include 57 states from Europe, Central Asia, and North America. In its Hate Crime Report released this week, OSCE found that there had been 792 anti-Christian hate crimes in 34 European countries, which would make Christians the most targeted religious group after Jews.

Reacting to OIDAC’s figures, OSCE’s Professor Regina Polak expressed concern about the rising number of incidents.

“The increasing number of anti-Christian hate crimes in Europe reported by OIDAC is deeply worrying,” she said.

“It is highly necessary to raise both governmental and societal awareness for this problem and undertake political measures to tackle and combat it decidedly.”

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Mary Reynolds
9 days ago

We have always called this religious persecution. The Safe Access Zones is a glaring example. The hate speech bill is another. It gives special protection to a transgender ideology that opposes Christian teaching. Schools here were ordered to reduce Catholic symbols to give space to others, under the guise of diversity. Statues, crucifixes, pictures, medals and shrines are a salient feature of Catholicism. As examples, Islam does not have emblems and they do not feature in Protestantism outside their church. The real purpose of this rule is to get all visibility of the Catholic religion and its influence out of schools, but they pretend otherwise. Abolishing its symbols is a way of doing this. Hospitals have been targeted too, where radical feminists have taken aim at religious iconography, for the same reason. The usual RTÉ radio presenters have waged a fanatical war against Catholicism, with their jeers, sneers and putdowns. As the national broadcaster, they should be impartial but are the mouthpiece of the government. We now have the pagan Halloween Púca festival of the occult, that is heavily promoted by RTÉ and bankrolled by the government. No mention of our traditional All Saints and All Souls Days. The quiet and low-key feast of St. Brigid was grabbed by the radical pagan feminists who call her a pagan goddess in their interests of pagan worship and promiscuity. RTÉ gave them a platform to wage a broadcast campaign for this, all of it to give the boot to Catholicism out of Ireland. Atheist Ireland who are the friends of the presenters have a heavy influence in RTÉ. This is the persecution of Catholicism, to get it out of sight and sound forever in Ireland.

James Gough
9 days ago
Reply to  Mary Reynolds

Sadly all true.

Jack Shaz
8 days ago
Reply to  Mary Reynolds

Religion should be personal and PRIVATE. It has no place in state schools or hospitals. Not Catholicism, Protestantism or Islam.

Safe access zones are necessary to keep people like you away from women in distress. Of course if you really were Christian you’d stay away from them anyway. It’s not any attack on Catholicism, but it is sad that it is necessary.

The notion that there’s an attack on Catholic schools when over 90% of schools are run by the church is a joke. I could only wish there was an attack on the church. It has no business in schools .

Mary Martin
6 days ago
Reply to  Jack Shaz

Dead rite again Jack. the church is all against women. you are the only one talking sense. all the hospitals should be made have abortions. the more the better to teach them nuns.

John Kilkenny
10 days ago

It’s hardly surprising. Media and Government have made it socially acceptable to insult the Church over decades. Leo Varadkar stood in the Dáil Chamber and insulted priests. If he’d said what he did about Islam or Judaism he’d have been gone instantly. When that’s the behaviour of your Taoiseach, what do you expect from his media and NGO lickspittles?

10 days ago

There’s no mention in the article about who is carrying out the attacks on Christians…

Mary Reynolds
9 days ago
Reply to  Ar87

The Catholic world – ‘Anti-Christian hate crimes in Europe up 44% in last year, watchdog group says’, by Daniel Payne. That gives some insight. SOME carried out by radicalized anti-Christian groups.

Mary Reynolds
9 days ago

Here are some more –
1. OIDAC Europe 2022/23 Annual Report.
They state Ireland has Europe’s most extreme hate speech bill.

2. The Catholic World – ‘Anti-Christian hate crimes in Europe up 44% in past year, watchdog group says’, by Daniel Payne.

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