Boris Johnson has used his Christmas Eve speech to pledge to help persecuted Christians around the world.
The Prime Minister said: “Christmas Day is, first and foremost, a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. It is a day of inestimable importance to billions of Christians, the world over.”
“Today of all days, I want us to remember those Christians around the world who are facing persecution.
Earlier this year the Foreign Office released a report which found that Christians are the most persecuted religious group in the world.
The Prime Minister noted: “For them, Christmas Day will be marked in private, in secret, perhaps even in a prison cell.
“As Prime Minister, that’s something I want to change. We stand with Christians everywhere, in solidarity, and we will defend your right to practise your faith.”
In the 50 countries where persecution is at its worst, around 245 million Christians experience high or extreme levels of suffering.