'We're Talking About A Common Human Right': Government Restrictions on Religion Clamp Down Over Ten-Year Period
(Worthy News) - The Pew Research Center released its 10th annual report on freedom of religion around the world, spanning over a decade of changes between 2007 and 2017.
The overall trend the report documented was a rise in religious suppression—and governments which carry it out—across the globe, with 52 governments severely restricting freedom of belief in 2017, over just 40 in 2007.
“Almost every faith that’s a majority somewhere is a minority somewhere else and often gets persecuted where they’re a minority,” Sam Brownback, the US ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, told reporters Tuesday ahead of a meeting with various religious leaders designed to address the issue.
The Middle East and Africa were by far the most conflicted areas in terms of religious violence documented by the report, but a loss of religious freedom was also pinpointed in Europe, where 20 countries in 2017, versus just 5 in 2007, placed significant restrictions on religious dress.
Not surprisingly, and in agreement with a recent British government report commissioned by foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt, Christians were the most persecuted group in the world ranked in terms of the number of countries in which they face persecution at 143, with Muslims a close second at 140.