“That nearly 70 years later we should still be seeing such evil persecution is to me beyond all belief. We owe it to those who suffered and died so horribly not to repeat the horrors of the past.”The Prince is said to have been deeply affected by a report released last month by the Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need, which warned that Islamic extremists were involved in “systematic attempts to annihilate” Christians and other groups.He told listeners: “The scale of religious persecution around the world is not widely appreciated nor is it limited to Christians in the troubled regions of the Middle East.”In an appeal to both Muslims and Christians, the Prince spoke of how Jesus and the Prophet Mohammed had both been forced to leave their homes because of religious persecution. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. The rise of populist groups has “deeply disturbing echoes of the dark days of the 1930s”, the Prince of Wales said, as he warned of growing religious persecution across the world.Appearing on Radio 4’s Thought for the Day slot, the Prince spoke of “increasingly aggressive” attitudes towards refugees fleeing Islamic State, and asked listeners to remember that Jesus had once been forced to escape religious persecution.Aides to the Prince were quick to stress that the strongly-worded address, which he is understood to have written himself, was not aimed at any particular politician or group. He said: “Normally at Christmas we think of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. I wonder though if this year we might remember how the story of the Nativity unfolds, with the fleeing of the Holy Family to escape violent persecution.“And we might also remember that when the Prophet Mohammed migrated from Mecca to Medina he did so because he too was seeking the freedom for himself and his followers to worship.”Whichever religious path we follow the destination is the same: to value and respect the other person; accepting their right to live out their peaceful response to the love of God.”The Prince has now delivered Thought for the Day on three occasions, having last filled the Radio 4 slot in January 2000, to mark the start of the new millennium.He also delivered the daily address in May 1995,to mark the 50th anniversary of VE Day. But his intervention comes after Donald Trump, the newly-elected US president, called for a ban on immigration from Muslim countries, while police have recorded a spike in race and religious hate crimes after the Brexit vote.In unusually stark language, the Prince warned that people were “struggling to capture the immensity of the ripple effect” of religious persecution by Islamic extremists in war-torn Syria and Iraq, which has led to millions fleeing their homes.He said: “The suffering doesn’t end when they arrive seeking refuge in a foreign land. We are now seeing the rise of many populist groups across the world that are increasingly aggressive towards those who adhere to a minority faith.“All of this has deeply disturbing echoes of the dark days of the 1930s. I was born in 1948 just after the end of world war two in which my parents’ generation had fought and died in a battle against intolerance monstrous extremism and an inhuman attempt to exterminate the Jewish population of Europe.