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Sri Lanka: Religious Freedom

Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN 122260, tabled on 11 January 2018

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of religious freedom in Sri Lanka; and what steps the Government is taking to promote and protect the right to freedom of religion or belief in that country.

Answered on

19 January 2018

The Government is concerned by the increase in the number of incidents of religious violence and ethnic tensions in Sri Lanka in 2017. We condemn all violence against religious minorities. The freedom to practise, change or share your faith or belief without discrimination or violent opposition is a fundamental human right that all people should enjoy. The UK regularly raises human rights concerns with the Sri Lankan government.

Through the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's work, we seek to work with other states to promote and protect the right to freedom of religion or belief. We work in the UN to ensure that states implement Human Rights Council Resolution 16/18, on combatting religious intolerance, protecting the human rights of minorities and promoting pluralism in society. We work with the UN to support all communities in Sri Lanka , and have committed £6.6 million from the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) to help Sri Lanka implement its human rights commitments.