• Leader: President Isaias Afewerki
  • Population: 5.5 million (2.7 million Christians)
  • Main Religion: Islam/Christianity
  • Government: One-party state
  • World Watch List Rank: 10
  • Source of Persecution: Dictatorial paranoia/ Islamic extremism

Three Christians died in prison in Eritrea in 2016.

Others have been in prison for over 11 years in miserable conditions; some are kept in shipping containers in scorching temperatures. Christians are considered 'agents of the West' and a threat to the state. Eritrean Muslims are 'Muslim first', and leaving Islam is seen as a betrayal of their community. Many Christians would rather risk the deadly emigration routes via Sudan or Libya than stay in Eritrea.

Read more about persecution in Eritrea

Please Pray 

  • Ask God to change the hearts of President Afewerki and his government and reveal Himself to them
  • For comfort and strength for imprisoned Christians, and that God will use them as witnesses to their captors
  • For protection for Christians who have fled Eritrea and are often at risk of trafficking and attack.


How we help

Since the late 1990s, Open Doors has strengthened believers in Eritrea through strategic partnerships with the local church. Open Doors encourages Christians in the region through:

  • Raising awareness and prayer
  • Encouraging positive engagement on behalf of the church
  • Offering discipleship support and practical assistance to persecuted Christians.

Latest News from Eritrea: