China’s Internet guidelines a ‘serious violation of people’s freedoms’

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China’s new draft guidelines on religious activities on the Internet, published last month, will curtail Christians’ freedom even further, writes Hong Kong-based professor Ying Fuk-tsang for UCAN “This is a serious violation of people’s freedom of speech and freedom of expression. It proves once again that the ‘Orwellian Empire’ is . . . Read More

‘Eliminate’ blasphemy laws, says US commission chief on International Blasphemy Day

In some countries blasphemy is a very sensitive topic and often leads to riots and violence, like in Islamabad, Pakistan, in November 2017.(Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Blasphemy laws are “dangerous” and should be “eliminated”, the chair of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) told Newsweek yesterday on International Blasphemy Day. The freedom to criticise or mock religion should not be decided by governments and their interpretation of laws, said Dr. Tenzin Dorjee. And it . . . Read More

Religious freedom a prerequisite for sustainable development, expert says

Poverty cannot be eradicated through government intervention alone but it needs the help of "innovative faith-based initiatives", says Brian Grim. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
As half a million people in 900 cities around the world campaign today for “sustainable” development goals, Brian Grim, president of the Religious Freedom and Business Foundation, argues that this cannot be achieved without religious freedom. “There is a strong and positive relationship between religious freedom and sustainable development as . . . Read More

Nepal’s criminalisation of conversion a ‘direct infringement’ of religious freedom

Nepal’s criminalisation of conversion a ‘direct infringement’ of religious freedom
The clause in Nepal’s constitution that prohibits religious conversions was added to “protect Hinduism at the expense of other religions”, says advocacy group CSW, on the third anniversary of the amended constitution. As World Watch Monitor reported, Nepal’s Christian minority feared that the so-called “anti-conversion” measure, which came into force . . . Read More

China: 279 church leaders sign petition urging government to stop its ‘violent actions’

"Christians are an enigma to the Chinese Communist Party," researcher Aaron Ma says. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
A public letter urging the Chinese government to stop its “violent actions” against Christians has been signed by some 279 church leaders in the country, reports the St. Charles Institute. In central Henan province alone, two-thirds of churches have closed and more than 7,000 crosses have been demolished after pressure from . . . Read More

Vietnam uses ‘national security’ to detain rights activists, UN told

Vietnam uses ‘national security’ to detain rights activists, UN told
Vietnam has been accused of “misinforming” the international community about the human rights issues in the country. The president of the Paris-based Vietnam Committee on Human Rights, Vo Van Ai, speaking at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, condemned the alleged “brutal crackdown on freedom of expression, association, peaceful . . . Read More