Malala’s 2012 shooting came at time of high social hostilities in Pakistan
Malala Yousafzai’s shooting came at a time when social hostilities involving religion were at a high point, both globally and in Pakistan.
Key facts about government-favored religion around the world
Today, more than 80 countries either have an official religion or favor one or more religious groups over others.
Many Countries Favor Specific Religions, Officially or Unofficially
Islam is the most common state religion, but many governments give privileges to Christianity.
Christians faced widespread harassment in 2015, but mostly in Christian-majority countries
Christians were harassed by governments or social groups in a total of 128 countries in 2015 – more countries than any other religious group.
Sub-Saharan Africa experienced largest increase in religious restrictions in 2015
While sub-Saharan Africa had fewer religious restrictions than many other parts of the world in 2015, it experienced a larger increase than any other region.
Religious restrictions vary significantly in the world’s most populous countries
Brazil and Japan were among countries with the lowest levels of religious restrictions in 2015, while Russia and Egypt were among countries with the highest.
Muslims, Jews faced social hostilities in seven-in-ten European countries in 2015
Europe in 2015 saw a rise in social hostilities involving religion, particularly against the continent’s Muslims.
Government harassment, use of force against religious groups increased sharply in Europe in 2015
Thirty-eight European governments harassed religious groups in limited or widespread ways in 2015, while 24 used some type of force against religious groups.
Restrictions on religion among the 25 most populous countries, 2007-2015
Among the world’s 25 most populous countries, Russia, Egypt, India, Pakistan, and Nigeria stand out as having the most restrictions on religion (as of the end of 2015) when both government restrictions and religious hostilities are taken into account.
Global Restrictions on Religion Rise Modestly in 2015, Reversing Downward Trend
Government restrictions on religion and social hostilities involving religion increased in 2015 for the first time in three years. Government harassment and use of force surged in Europe, as did social hostilities against Muslims.