Tunisians protest against closure of cafes and restaurants during Ramadan

People walking in Medina in Sfax, a city on Tunisia's east coast. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Non-Muslims in Tunisia have taken to the streets during this year’s Ramadan to protest the closure of many cafés and restaurants, saying they can’t be forced to fast, reports the New York Times (NYT). Around 100 protestors began Ramadan this year by drinking water and eating sandwiches in central Tunis in . . . Read More

Iran: appeal heard by judge with ‘poor track record in dealing with Christians’

Iran: appeal heard by judge with ‘poor track record in dealing with Christians’
Four Iranian Christians each sentenced to at least ten years in prison had their first appeal hearing yesterday (25 April). In the hearing, initially scheduled for February but postponed, a judge heard the case of Christian converts Hadi Asgari, Amin Afshar-Naderi, Kaviyan Fallah-Mohammadi and Assyrian pastor Victor Bet-Tamraz. At least . . . Read More

Tunisia’s religious freedom curbed by societal pressure – UN Rapporteur

The Malik ibn Anas Mosque in Carthage, near the capital Tunis. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Old laws and societal pressure pose the greatest challenges to religious freedom in Tunisia, concluded the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief, Ahmed Shaheed, after a ten-day visit. Though Tunisia’s 2014 Constitution guarantees religious freedom, there is still work to be done to align its laws and . . . Read More

Religious freedom learning platform launched at UN

Religious freedom learning platform launched at UN
A new website to help promote understanding of freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) was launched yesterday in Geneva, Switzerland, at the 37th session of the Human Rights Council. The Sweden-based FoRB Learning Platform provides downloadable resources in 13 different languages, including quick guides to religious rights, movie clips, theological . . . Read More

Uzbekistan should ‘protect religious freedom, not see religion as a threat’ – UN Special Rapporteur

Uzbekistan should ‘protect religious freedom, not see religion as a threat’ – UN Special Rapporteur
Uzbekistan should invest more time in protecting religious freedom in its ongoing reforms rather than see religion as a threat, a UN expert has concluded after an official visit to the country. “Resilience against religious extremism can be built on strengthening diversity as well as freedom of religion or belief,” . . . Read More