Hate crimes against pro-life Christians across Europe increased in 2020, especially in Poland as the country took action to protect unborn babies from abortions, according to a new report.
Catholic News Agency noted the huge uptick in vandalisms, arsons, assaults, threats and other crimes against Christians based on new data from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).
In 2020, OSCE documented 980 hate crimes against Christians, compared to 595 in 2019, according to the report. However, the numbers likely are much higher. CNA pointed out that only 11 of the 57 participating states report hate crimes against Christians to the OSCE.
Poland, one of the few countries in Europe that still protects unborn babies from abortion, was the hardest hit in 2020. It reported 241 incidents, many of which directly targeted pro-life Christians and Catholic Churches, the report states.
In one incident, “a man was hit with a mobile phone and threatened with a knife at a cathedral by two women during a religious ceremony. This was one in a series of incidents targeting the Catholic church due to its stance on abortion,” according to OSCE.
In another case, a Catholic priest was stabbed several times in the stomach in October, and a third involved pro-life Catholics gathered at a monument of Pope John Paul II who were attacked with metal bars, according to OSCE.
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Here’s more from CNA:
Women’s rights activists vandalized a monument to unborn children at night with black paint in a Polish Catholic cemetery in October 2020.
Abortion activists also vandalized a cross at a cemetery commemorating victims of Nazism in the same month, according to the report.
People praying in front of a Catholic cathedral were assaulted by women’s rights activists, who threw bottles, stones, and firecrackers, injuring several worshippers.
The hate crimes occurred during a heated abortion debate in Poland. In October 2020, its Constitutional Court struck down one of the few exceptions allowed in its 1993 abortion law: abortions on unborn babies with disabilities. The justices ruled that the exception violates the constitution because it discriminates against human beings with disabilities. Poland now only allows abortions in cases of rape, incest and threats to the mother’s life.
In response to the ruling, abortion activists held massive protests across the country. Pro-abortion rioters vandalized buildings, disrupted church services, harassed Catholic Church leaders and blocked streets in major cities. Nearly 100 people were arrested during the first week of protests alone, according to an AP report at the time.
Christians in other European countries were victims of hate crimes as well. Arson attacks on Catholic churches were reported in France, Germany, Italy and Spain, and four churches and a monastery in Spain were vandalized on International Women’s Day, a day abortion activists use to call for legalized abortion on demand, CNA reported.
LifeNews.com also has been keeping track of attacks on pro-life advocates in recent years.
Reports this year include:
Ohio – Pro-Life Student Display Vandalized Again at Xavier College (Xavier Newswire)
Bolivia – Church Vandalized after Being Falsely Accused of Intervening to Prevent Pregnant 11-Year-Old from Getting an Abortion (National Catholic Register)
Ohio – Pro-Life Display Defaced on Xavier College Campus (Xavier Newswire)
Austria – Police Block Aggressive Pro-Abortion Protesters, Protect Pro-Lifers at Vienna March for Life (Live Action News)
Maryland – Police Intervene after University of Maryland Student Knocks Down Pro-Life Group’s Signs (The Diamondback)
Florida – Man Arrested for Allegedly Threatening to Shoot Pro-Life Congressman, His Children (Politico)
New Hampshire – Pro-Abortion Students Vandalize, Destroy College Republicans’ Pro-Life Signs (Campus Reform)
Massachusetts – Abortion Activists Vandalize Pro-Life Signs, Threaten Violence, Call Pro-Life Leader “Anti-Woman Pig” (Townhall)
England – Exeter University Pro-Life Student Society Receives Death Threats (Devon Live)
Pennsylvania – Pro-Abortion Protesters Bang on Pregnancy Center Windows, Block Door with Sign (Choose Life Marketing)
England – Abortion Activists Destroy Student Pro-Life Display at Oxford University Fair (Cherwell) (The Telegraph)
USA – Pro-Lifers Assaulted, Pregnant Woman Shoved to the Ground at Women’s Marches (Students for Life)
Iowa – Abortion Activist Vandalizes Pro-Life Sign, Accosts Pro-Life Student (Campus Reform)
California – Pepperdine University students vandalize pro-life display, rip down crosses (Fox News)
Texas – Abortion Activists Assaults, Throws Cup Full of Liquid at Pro-Life Advocate at Houston Pro-Life Rally (TFP Student Action)
Ohio – Police Remove Screaming Pro-Abortion Protesters from State Senate Chamber (FOX 55/AP)
Switzerland – Three Pro-Life Organizations Vandalized with Pro-Abortion Graffiti ahead of National Pro-Life March (Evangelical Focus Europe)
California – Eggs Thrown at Pro-Life Candidate Larry Elder, Staffer Hit in Face (Fox News)
Colorado – Vandals Deface Boulder County Catholic Church with Pro-Abortion Graffiti (Washington Times)
New York – Police Arrest Two Abortion Activists for Allegedly Blocking Pro-Life Prayer Rally (National Review)
Connecticut – Pro-Life Billboard in Barkhamsted Vandalized with “Get an Abortion” and Coat Hangers (ProLife Across America)
Poland – Pro-Life Billboard Showing Abortion Victims Gets Vandalized about Once a Week (The Calvert Journal)
Arizona – Students for Life: Planned Parenthood Volunteers Steal Pro-Life Students’ Bags (Students for Life blog)
Oregon – Antifa Tries to Disrupt Pro-Life Prayer Group with Violence outside Planned Parenthood (Citizen Stringer), Andy Ngo (video, video, video)
Canada – Pro-Life Memorial Broken in Spate of Vandalism Targeting Catholic Churches (Catholic News Agency)
South Carolina – Antifa Radicals Vandalize Pro-Life Congresswoman Nancy Mace’s Home
Illinois – Authorities: Fire at Peoria Pro-Life Pregnancy Center Was Intentionally Set (NPR Illinois State University)
Texas – Pro-Life Aggies’ Sign Ripped Down, Replaced with Signs Advertising Planned Parenthood (National Right to Life News)
Canada – Church Pro-Life Billboard Vandalized Twice near Vancouver (The B.C. Catholic)
Washington, D.C. – Man Threatens to Shoot Pro-Life Sidewalk Counselors (Students for Life)
Argentina – Female Judge Receives Multiple Death Threats after Blocking Pro-Abortion Law (Crux)