By Joseph DeCaro
Victims of religious freedom violations are expected to testify at an upcoming national conference in Mexico.
The conference is organized by Christian Solidarity Worldwide, a Christian organization working for religious freedom through advocacy and human rights in the pursuit of justice.
Currently, Mexico has one of the highest rates of religious freedom violations in the Western Hemisphere. Wherever traditional Mexican justice is practiced, minority religious groups are routinely subjected to forced conversion and participation in majority religious festivals, exclusion from state run schools, denial of basic utilities and even forced expulsion.
A report by the Mexican Commission for the Promotion of Human Rights published in September found that religious intolerance is one of the major causes of forced displacement.
"It is our hope that this conference will give a voice to victims who have been marginalized and silenced by the very government that should protect and uphold their rights," said CSW's Chief Operating Officer Andy Dipper. "It is unacceptable that in a modern democracy like Mexico, men, women and children continue to suffer violence and forced displacement solely because of their religious beliefs."