July 2019 – Nearly 40% of 75 countries listed in a new report threaten the religious liberty of their residents. Details are included in an April release by Family Research Council’s Center for Religious Liberty. Through legal and cultural support for apostasy, blasphemy, and/or anti-conversion laws, these nations threaten their citizens’ freedom to choose or change one’s faith.
The report adds to the evidence documented in recent years in a variety of studies that show governmental and social hostility toward religious believers is increasing worldwide.
Apostasy laws, according to the report, punish people who convert away from Islam, thus preventing Muslims from freely choosing their faith.
Although largely unenforced worldwide, blasphemy laws in Muslim majority countries frequently are used against minorities – “often with no evidence – to settle unrelated disputes and vendettas.”
Anti-conversion laws prohibit people from converting to another religion. The CRL report said these laws are often used by governments in the Hindu and Buddhist world “to maintain a majority of the population with their preferred religion.”
The study findings show “a significant portion of the world’s population living under regimes that do not respect religious freedom,” said Travis Weber, director of the CRL.
onenewsnow.com, 5/2/19; frc.org, 4/30/19