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  • Myanmar Politician Preparing to Seek Legal Limits on Interfaith, Interethnic Marriage

  • Call for Religious Leaders to Teach Acceptance in Malaysia

  • Attacks on religion, liberty

  • Can Muslim lands learn to tolerate Christianity?

  • China vents anger over Dalai Lama's planned Norway visit

  • Militia attack Muslims in Central African Republic's capital

  • Egypt’s new charter stronger on personal freedoms

  • Pussy Riot members freed from prison

  • Frank Wolf, champion of religious freedom, will end congressional career

  • A Political Deal in a Deeply Divided Tunisia as Islamists Agree to Yield Power

  • Egyptian Christians Bridle at Prison Terms for Copts Only in Fatal Clash

  • The Central African Republic descending into ‘complete chaos’

  • French burqa ban challenged in top European court

  • Sharia in Sudan v. women and religious freedom

  • China aims to harness religious beliefs to promote harmony

  • Afghanistan Considers Reinstating Public Stoning for Adultery

  • Sunnis Close Baghdad Mosques to Challenge Religious Attacks

  • Modi campaign stirs religious divide in India's heartland

  • Aung San Suu Kyi, and Myanmar, faces an uncertain future

  • Syrian Christians flee persecution as Patriarch urges them to stay in war-torn country

  • Central African Republic on the verge of genocide, France warns UN

  • Myanmar rejects U.N. resolution on Rohingya Muslims

  • How the State Department Is Getting Religion

  • UN to Myanmar: Make Rohingya Muslims citizens

  • Our Failed Religious Freedom Policy

  • Turkey drops a screen over Christianity

  • Opinion: The oppression of Bahais continues in Iran

  • TAJIKISTAN: "The Law demands that all religious literature be checked by the State"

  • Sudan’s Enduring Question: The Role of Shari'ah in the Constitution and Law

  • The Role of the Hijab Is Becoming a National Problem for Russia

  • For Indian Christian leader, Narendra Modi is a threat to religious freedom

  • Commentary: The two faces of India

  • With 'loving kindness', Myanmar frees 69 political prisoners

  • New U.N. Rights Council Members Are Elected

  • Turkish court lifts headscarf ban for attorneys

  • Egypt's Christians close ranks as kidnappings spike

  • Hundreds of Buddhists in Myanmar protest Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s upcoming visit

  • Frank Wolf Renews Calls for Release of U.S. Pastor from Iranian Prison

  • Many Sunnis and Shias Worry About Religious Conflict

  • China paper blames blind faith of “uncultured” Uighur youth for Xinjiang unrest

  • Turkey's Alevis protest for greater freedoms

  • KAZAKHSTAN: "He was told not to sell religious literature"

  • Myanmar violence between Buddhists, Muslims threatens reforms

  • UZBEKISTAN: Baptist camp ordered seized, Protestant pressured to inform

  • Tibetans Call China’s Policies at Tourist Spot Tacit but Stifling

  • Violence against Muslims threatening Myanmar reforms: U.N. envoy

  • Putin says unnamed foreign foes use radical Islam to weaken Russia

  • Malaysia’s curbs on use of the term ‘Allah’ hurting its moderate Muslim image

  • Vietnamese Court Orders Two Parishioners of Vinh Diocese Jailed

  • Opinion:State Department stays mute on persecuted religious minorities worldwide

  • Turkey, Religious Freedom and the Current State of Christian-Muslim Dialogue (1895)

  • In Nigeria, Wedlock Seen as Terror Fix

  • Northern Iraq no longer safe for Christians

  • Clerics call on UN military force to secure Central African Republic

  • EU condemns Egypt church violence, urges end to religion-based attacks

  • Young Turkish Jews emigrating due to anti-Semitism, tensions with Israel

  • Egypt orders trial of four policemen over killing of Islamist detainees

  • Passion of Pakistani Sufis infuriates Taliban

  • Egyptian writer may face jail for accusations of defaming religion

  • UN expert hails “key breakthrough for religious freedom reached in Cyprus”

  • Kenneth Bae's mother tells of heartbreak after seeing, leaving imprisoned son

  • Conviction of Christians for Murder of Hindu Leader in India Biased, Unfounded, Attorneys Say

  • Opera Fights Hungary’s Rising Anti-Semitism

  • Buddhists and Christians denounce Hanoi for using law to control religions

  • ARMENIA: "Imprisoned conscientious objectors should be immediately and unconditionally released"

  • Bombs planted in confessional box of Syrian church

  • French court upholds Scientology fraud conviction

  • Suzan Johnson Cook to resign as religious freedom ambassador

  • BELARUS: Why is Catholic priest still detained by KGB secret police?

  • Q&A: What Court Decision on Use of ‘Allah’ Means for Malaysia

  • The Surprising Story Of 'Thomas Jefferson's Qur'an'

  • Religious tension runs deep for Vietnam’s minorities

  • Malala Yousafzai wins EU's Sakharov human rights prize

  • Religious liberty takes center stage in diplomacy with Iran

  • Turban row: Sikh NGO wins case against France at UN

  • Vietnam Lets Churches Thrive, but Keeps Control

  • KAZAKHSTAN: Pastor to be transferred from prison to house arrest

  • Kenya Salvation Army Church Torched; Four Killed

  • Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng gets U.S. platform to promote human rights

  • Orthodox leader calls for end Christians' persecution

  • Jewish groups slam Council of Europe Assembly resolution on circumcision

  • Opinion: Quebec’s coup d’etat against religious freedom

  • Small town, big impact: Supreme Court case could define religion’s role in public

  • European council passes anti-ritual circumcision resolution

  • Council of Muftis complain to U.S. reps about disrespect for Muslims in Russia

  • Woman, 94, killed as Buddhist rioters attack Muslim villages in western Myanmar

  • RUSSIA: What's wrong with "extremist" Koran translation?

  • Persecution against Christians increases in many parts of the world

  • How Promotion of Religious Freedom Can Help Prevent Extreme Violence

  • RUSSIA: Muslims rush to challenge Koran "extremism" ruling

  • Judge Ordered Sikh to Remove 'That Rag' from Head, Says ACLU

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    Religious Freedom Around the World PDF Print E-mail


    Religious Freedom Around the World

    Evangelicals Complain of Licensing Discrimination

    Evangelicals in Romania say they have experienced discrimination in the granting of licenses to conduct public radio broadcasts. Christian broadcasters blame the Romanian Orthodox Church for pressuring the government to refuse to renew licenses for the six currently operating Protestant groups, including Baptists, Pentecostals and Plymouth Brethren.

    Russian Law Targets Witnesses And Christian Scientists

    Last year’s Russian law governing "the Freedom of Conscience and Religious Associations." has already begun to claim its victims. The Jehovah's Witnesses face prosecution which officially aims at "the liquidation of the Association of Jehovah's Witnesses of the City of Moscow" and the banning of its activity on the basis of the Russian Federation law. "We are deeply concerned that the prosecutor's unjust action against Jehovah's Witnesses may be the beginning of the religious persecution feared by many when the new law on religious associations was passed," declared V. M. Kalin, Coordinator of the Witnesses' Administrative Center in St. Petersburg.

    Leaders of the Christian Science Church in Saint Petersburg, meanwhile, were informed that in the absence of proof that the congregation had existed for 15 years, it would be registered as a foreign religious organization without the rights of a legal personality.

    Visa Rule Bans Catholic Priests

    The Russian government is also adopting a new visa system which threatens to make it impossible for the Roman Catholic Church to maintain the supply of priests needed for normal parish life. Unlike foreign athletes or businessmen, foreign religious workers are not given the right to extend their stays in Russia or to apply for multiple-entry visas. Instead, they must apply for new visas every three months. Catholics expect to need to rely on foreign nationals as priests for at least another generation, until their newly reopened seminary in St. Petersburg can fill the void. Smaller and newer religious groups face similar problems, as they experience rapid growth in the post-communist era.

    News from Belarussia

    The trial of Petro Hushscha--the leader of the Belarusian National Church, a 4,000- strong body that broke away from the Belarusian Exarchate of the Orthodox Church and which maintains links with Lutherans of the Augsburg Confession--was due to begin last month. Defenders believe the charges against public indecency—are trumped it and see the trial as a test of religious freedom against the dominance of state-approved Orthodoxy.

    In another Belarussian legal development, the Ministry of Justice has dropped its attempt to liquidate the youth arm of Reverend Sun Myung Moon’s Unification movement. The suit alleged that the Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP) aimed at changing the constitutional order through violence and inciting religious and racial hatred. In its defense, the group produced more than 50 letters of gratitude from local officials for its work in AIDS education, drug abuse and charity work with orphanages.

    Christians Report Suffering In India and Pakistan

    Despite recent tensions between India and Pakistan over the question of nuclear testing, it appears the countries have at least one thing in common. Sources indicate that both countries fail to protect the rights of Christians and other religious minorities who suffering economic discrimination and face attacks from Muslim and Hindu fundamentalists.

    At a conference in Washington DC last July, the Pakistani-American Christian Association detailed incidents of religious intolerance and government insensitivity toward Christian and other minorities in Pakistan.

    The situation is no better in India. Johan Candelin, International Director of the Religious Liberty Commission of the World Evangelical Fellowship, stated, "All the Protestant pastors and the representatives from the Roman Catholic Church had the same message: "The situation is getting worse every day."

    "There is direct violence against religious communities, priests, pastors and nuns. There are attacks on evangelists and evangelistic work and there is pressure on Christian institutions, including schools, colleges, hospitals and churches.

    German Parliament Inquiry Won’t Use the Term "Sect"

    The German Parliamentary Commission on "So-called Sects and Pyschogroups" issued its final report last June and decided to swear off using the term that defined its mission.

    "New religions and ideological groups and psychogroups are a response to the consequences of social changes. In turning to these communities people are looking for support and orientation in the form of alternative ways of living," the report said.

    "But the work of the Commission has revealed that only certain of these groups are laden with conflict and that no generalized statements on the whole spectrum of [these] groups can be made."

    As a consequence of this fact, the Commission has decided to no longer use the term "sect."