World News

Religious freedom advocates warn against repression of religious minorities during the pandemic

Sam Brownback, the U.S. ambassador for religious freedom, warned about the stigmatization of certain religious minorities, and that some governments might close houses of worship for good after the coronavirus pandemic subsides.


Addressing the closure of churches, mosques, synagogues, and other houses of worship around the world in order to prevent the spread of the virus through religious gatherings, Sam Brownback—the U.S. Ambassador at-Large for International Religious Freedom—acknowledged that governments in some regions would try to keep them closed beyond the current public health emergency, in order to crack down on religious minorities.

“That’s a deep concern that I’ve raised to our [International Religious Freedom] Alliance allies and others,” he told reporters on Wednesday. “We don’t want to see the leftover of this impact the closing of these religious institutions.”

Religious freedom advocates have warned against repression of religious minorities during the pandemic.

The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) condemned the stigmatization of certain religious minorities as scapegoats for purportedly spreading the pandemic. It also listed countries that had already infringed upon religious freedom in their responses to the pandemic, in March.

Brownback spoke at the State Department’s publication of its annual Report on International Religious Freedom, which documents positive and negative trends in countries around the world which are either upholding freedom of religion or repressing and persecuting religious minorities.

Continue to the whole article here

Leave a reply