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Religious Freedom

Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN 220807, tabled on 14 January 2015

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent steps he has taken to reduce religious persecution across the world.

Answered on

21 January 2015

Freedom of religion or belief is one of our international human rights priorities. We work actively both bilaterally and multilaterally to ensure governments protect the right of all individuals to practise their religion or belief free from persecution or discrimination. Government foreign policy on freedom of religion or belief is informed by expertise from UK civil society and Parliament, including through an Advisory Group to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister for Human Rights. We are active in the United Nations, European Union and other relevant international organisations in calling on states to promote and protect the right to freedom of religion or belief and ensure the free and equal participation of all in society. As an example of our bilateral work, the UK is currently providing Nigeria with a package of support to assist in its fight against the extremist and intolerant views of Boko Haram, whose indiscriminate attacks have caused suffering in communities of different faiths and ethnicities.