Skip to main content

Bangladesh: Religious Freedom

Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN HL1224, tabled on 14 July 2016

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, in the light of reports of the dousing with gasoline and setting alight of a Catholic woman in the village of Kajura, what representations they have made to the government of Bangladesh and its representatives in London about the protection of atheists, moderate Muslims and religious minorities in Bangladesh and the bringing to justice of those responsible for recent reported killings and violent attacks.

Answered on

29 July 2016

We are in regular contact with the Bangladesh government about extremism, human rights and a range of other issues. The former Prime Minister, my right hon. Friend the Member for Witney (Mr Cameron) most recently spoke to the Prime Minister of Bangladesh about countering extremism in the margins of the G7 meeting in Japan on 27 May. The former Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for East Devon (Mr Swire) raised this with Foreign Minister Ali on 5 July. The British High Commissioner regularly discusses these issues with Bangladesh government ministers.

In September 2015 the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief visited Bangladesh. We urge the Bangladesh government to implement the recommendations in his report, which include a call for the government to “protect the vibrant civil society and pluralistic society in Bangladesh”.