The cause of Christians striving to practise their faith without fear or pressure often advances and retreats in countries outside those where Christians directly live under the most oppression. In London, New York, Strasbourg, Washington, and other centres of deliberation, important developments happen concerning Christians and religious freedom more broadly. This is the page where we consolidate news with an international scope.

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Report: UN weakness on religious freedom undercuts its authority on human rights

Dressed in the saffron colour, groups such these are promoting the nationalist cause for India to be a Hindu-nation. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

The UN cannot strengthen, promote and protect human rights if it does not prioritise religious freedom, a report published by the Washington-based human rights alliance, ADF International has argued. The 73-page report, titled “Anti-Conversion Laws and the International Response”, claims that “some UN entities, especially special rapporteurs, have highlighted the […]

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Religious freedom is a prerequisite for democracy – US commission

China's catholic dioceses are to respond to the government led campaign of the 'sinicization of religion' with a plan of action.  (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

A wealth of research shows that a society’s level of religious freedom is linked to its levels of critical social indicators, such as prosperity, stability and peace, the chairman of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom told British parliamentarians. Dr. Daniel Mark, chairman of USCIRF, an independent, bipartisan federal […]

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USCIRF wants 6 more countries on US Govt’s religious-freedom watch list

USCIRF wants 6 more countries on US Govt’s religious-freedom watch list

The US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) wants six more countries to be added to the US State Department’s religious-freedom watch list. The Central African Republic, Nigeria, Pakistan, Russia, Syria, and Vietnam should become ‘Countries of Particular Concern’ (CPCs) – a designation the US government uses to describe countries […]

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North Korea, China, Russia and Iran ‘forces of instability’

Tibetan Buddhists as well as Uyghur Muslims are among the minority groups that Chinese authorities are clamping down on. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

The US State Department has called North Korea, China, Russia, and Iran “forces of instability” in its latest set of country reports on human rights, saying they “violate the human rights of those within their borders on a daily basis”. The 2017 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, published on […]

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Ongoing religious freedom challenges in the Commonwealth

Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May welcomed Heads of State of the Commonwealth member states at Windsor Castle, west of London, on 20 April 2018. (Photo: JACK TAYLOR/AFP/Getty Images)

A new report on religious freedom in Commonwealth member states says minorities in India, Malaysia and Nigeria have the least freedom to practise their faith. Using data from the Pew Global Religious Futures Project, the new report by the Council of Christians and Jews noted that Christianity is the largest […]

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Commonwealth worst offenders urged to face up to poor levels of religious freedom

Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari received Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, at Nigeria's High Commission in London on 11 April 2018. (Photo: Facebook)

A charity that supports persecuted Christians has urged Commonwealth heads of government meeting in England next week to address poor levels of religious liberty in their countries. The charity Open Doors warned that unless representatives of the 53 Commonwealth nations “explicitly include[ed] the right to freedom of religion or belief […]

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Museum recalls tenacity of Japan’s hidden Christians

A monument in Nagasaki for the twenty-six Catholics who were executed here for their faith in 1597. (Photo: Thaths via Flickr; CC 2.0)

A museum telling the story of Christian persecution in Japan has opened within the premises of Japan’s oldest standing church, in Nagasaki. The facility in a former seminary and bishop’s residence, forms part of the Catholic Oura Church, and has been renovated. It recounts the introduction of Catholicism, its violent […]

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World Council of Churches condemns persecution of other religions

World Council of Churches condemns persecution of other religions

The general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC), Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, has condemned efforts to incite violence against people who practise other faiths as “abhorrent and ungodly”. “Freedom of religion is as much about Christian minorities in Muslim countries as it is about followers of Islam […]

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Persecuted Christians celebrate Easter with mixed emotions

Flag of Syria is waving as sign of victory over the destroyed heavily damaged city of Aleppo. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

Easter this year was a time of mixed emotions for the Christians who live under pressure for their faith. While political and religious leaders called for peace, reconciliation and brotherhood, Christians in countries like Syria and the Philippines continued to face violence and its consequences. Below, World Watch Monitor gives […]

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