Palestinian Territories

Palestinian Territories Facts

Score: 60 / 100
Region: Middle East
Persecution Type: Islamic Oppression
Persecution Level: High
Population: 4,928,000
Christians: 67,700
Main Religion: Islam
Government: Interim Administration
Leader: President Mahmoud Abbas

Profile of Persecution Methodology

Violence 7%
Church Life 75%
National Life 63%
Community Life 64%
Family Life 77%
Private Life 72%

Where Persecution Comes From

Palestinian Christians are caught in the middle of the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and many people are not aware that Christians exist in the region. Their faith makes them minorities within the Muslim-majority Palestinian community, and their Arab ethnicity results in numerous restrictions on the Israeli side. While the Palestinian Territories are considered a union, there are two different areas: Gaza and the West Bank. While laws in the West Bank generally protect religious freedom, those in Gaza are restrictive. Palestinian society as a whole deems that conversion from Islam to Christianity is unacceptable.

How Christians are Suffering

The degree of Christian persecution believers face in the Palestinian Territories depends on their tradition and heritage. Historical churches make up the majority of the Christian population, and generally have good relations within society. Most of their persecution comes from the Israeli side, including visa restrictions and harassment of church leaders by Jewish extremists. Evangelicals are a much smaller group, and they face denominational resistance from historical churches, as well as the same pressure on the Israeli side. Converts from Islam to Christianity bear the brunt of the persecution, as their conversions are rejected by their communities and families. Historical churches turn away converts for fear of repercussions from the Muslim majority.


In 2016, two converts to Christianity were shunned by their families. They are still living in the West Bank and Gaza, respectively, with much caution.

During the WWL 2018 reporting period, it was reported that a convert in Gaza had been physically assaulted by his family. He is now in hiding.

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Pray for Palestinian Territories

  • In general, pressure has escalated in the territories due to increasing political instability. Pray for peace and stability to enter the region.
  • Pray with Christians in the Palestinian Territories for courage to live out their faith and be ambassadors of Christ’s peace in the country.
  • Pray that Christians would be salt and light in their communities, especially in their interactions with Muslims. Pray that they would be able to show Christ’s love to their neighbors.

Stories from Palestinian Territories

August 10, 2018

‘The Day I Nearly Died’–How One Palestinian Christian Unexpectedly Found Life

In Palestine, Nadia* shares how she gained eternal life the day she nearly died--and became a leader in a network…


December 29, 2017

‘Love Us As Well’: A Reflection on Palestinian Christians

Traveling to other parts of the world, I have learned that things are not always as clear-cut as they seem.…


August 29, 2017

On the West Bank: Muslim Man Becomes Secret Believer and Loses It All for Jesus

“I want to understand why God came to earth to ride on a donkey.”