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Christians Under Communist Rule
The Orthodox Church was one of the primary targets by the Soviet Government once they came into power. Legislation banned open forms of worship and any influence the Church could have on society, and hundreds of thousands of clergyman were murdered. By the onset of World War II over 98 percent of the churches had been confiscated or destroyed. While the most well known holocaust to occur in the twentieth century was of the Jews by the Nazis with 6 million killed, over 20 to 40 million Christians were killed under the iron regimes of Lenin and Stalin. Active persecution of Christians continued in the Soviet Union until the fall of Communism that occurred in the 1990s.