The Problem

100,000 million Christians face persecution simply for following Jesus 
The Problem


Leader: Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj
Population: 6.5 million (37,900 Christians)
Main Religion: Islam
Government: Parliamentary Republic
Source of persecution: Islamic extremism
World Watch List Rank: 4

“They were martyred in the name of Jesus Christ. They kept the faith until the last moment. They didn’t deny the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We are proud of them.”
The brother of one of 21 Egyptian migrant workers executed in Libya by Islamic State extremists

The basics

Libya has descended into lawlessness since the fall of Gadaffi in 2011, giving groups such as the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS ) free reign to attack Christians. Libya is a deeply Islamic culture, so Libyan Christians must keep their faith completely secret; churches for Libyans and Christian literature in Arabic are forbidden. While migrant Christians are allowed to practise their faith in Libya, many have paid the ultimate price; In 2016 79 Ethiopian and Eritrean refugees were kidnapped by IS militants and 30 of them were killed. Believers who share their faith publicly risk arrest and violence.

The facts

  • Since the revolution in 2011 the situation for Christians has got worse and worse.
  • The government says all Libyans are Sunni Muslims, though there are an estimated 42,000 Christians.
  • It’s illegal to take Arabic Bibles into Libya or to share the gospel
  • The government has been unable to stop violent extremist groups, like those affiliated with IS, taking control of strategic areas.
  • A key leader has suggested that Christians should be thought of as a threat to national security. Police monitor Christian activity.
  • Migrant workers from other countries are allowed churches, but churches for Libyans are forbidden.
  • Libyan converts may be beaten by family members, whereas Christian migrant workers can face threats and severe violence.

Where is it?

Pray this…

Father God,
even in places where rules are ignored and injustice is everywhere, Your name is still holy. Even where Your Word is restricted and people struggle to meet to worship, You are still mighty. Strengthen Your Church in Libya. Give them what they need – fresh ways to learn more, meet together and encourage one another. Bring protection so the small Christian community can share Your love. Change the future, so that Libya stops sliding into chaos. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Other things to pray for…

  • For protection for Christians in Libya – hundreds are reported to have been abducted by paramilitaries and imprisoned
  • For Christians to find ways to meet together – religious gatherings are illegal for Libyans if they are not Islamic, which makes Libyan believers afraid to meet
  • For ongoing peace talks between different ruling factions to be fruitful, and for a stable and safe Libya to be formed.

More detailed info…

The good news: How we’re helping…

Latest news and articles on Libya…

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We support people who are beaten, tortured,
imprisoned, falsely accused, and hated simply for following Jesus.