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Special Envoy on Freedom of Religion or Belief

Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN HL4380, tabled on 13 May 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they plan to make the position of UK Special Envoy for Freedom of Religion or Belief a permanent position; and, if so, whether the role will always be filled by a member of the House of Commons or House of Lords.

Answered on

19 May 2020

The Bishop of Truro's independent Review of Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) Support for Persecuted Christians recommended that the FCO "establish[es] permanently, and in perpetuity, the role of Special Envoy for Freedom of Religion or Belief". The choice of Special Envoy is a decision for the Prime Minister. I was honoured to be appointed in 2018 as the UK's first ever envoy, an appointment reconfirmed by the current Prime Minister in July 2019. Rehman Chishti MP succeeded me as Special Envoy for Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB) in September 2019, but I continue to champion FoRB as Minister of State with responsibility for Human Rights.