6-year-old girl in coma for a month after being beaten for Christian faith in Vietnam

Photo of a secret church leader prayer meeting in VietnamOpen Doors

A 6-year-old girl was in a coma for a month after being badly beaten because of her Christian faith by villagers in Vietnam.

Open Doors UK said that the girl, who cannot be named for security reasons, was beaten along with her Christian parents after being dragged out of their home in northern Vietnam. 

The family were beaten by angry villagers after they converted to Christianity and stopped joining in the tradition of ancestor worship.

Open Doors UK said that they were "mocked, tied with ropes and severely beaten while being dragged over rocky ground toward the entrance of the village, forcing them to leave".

They were taken to hospital by members of their church where they spent three days receiving treatment for their injuries.

Open Doors UK, which supports persecuted Christians worldwide, said that the girl has regained consciousness but has no recollection of what happened and is not able to recognise her parents. 

She and her parents were allowed to return to their village after their pastor approached the local authorities but they have continued to be on the receiving end of hostility from their neighbours because of their Christian faith. 

Vietnam is an officially atheist country and ranks 20th in the Open Doors World Watch List of 50 countries where Christians suffer the most for their faith.

State and tribal forms of persecution are commonplace in Vietnam, according to the World Watch List's country report, with Christians reporting being beaten and expelled from their villages because of their faith. 

The country report states: "Both non-traditional Protestants and converts from indigenous religions are persecuted intensively. Estimates indicate that approximately 80 percent of the country's Christians belong to the country's ethnic minorities, like the Hmong, and face social exclusion, discrimination and attacks.

"Ethnic minority Christian children are discriminated against in schools; their medical needs also are often neglected. Some are not even allowed to attend school.

"Non-Christian relatives of Christians are also strong persecutors, cutting family ties and denying any family inheritance. In some cases, relatives force a Christian spouse to divorce and then withhold custody of their children. Believers' homes are sometimes destroyed, forcing them to leave their village."