Africa: Religious Freedom

(asked on 19th July 2021) - View Source

Question to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office:

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, with reference to the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom’s factsheet entitled Nonbelievers in Africa published on 11 June 2021, what assessment his Department has made of the scale of challenges faced by non-religious people in Africa.


Answered by
Nigel Adams Portrait
Nigel Adams
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Minister without Portfolio)
This question was answered on 22nd July 2021

We have taken note of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom's factsheet entitled Nonbelievers in Africa. Protecting freedom of religion or belief for all faiths, and none, remains a priority for the UK Government. Members of non-religious communities continue to be victims of harassment and persecution, despite progress over recent years with the promotion of freedom of religion or belief for all. The UK Government remains deeply concerned about the severity and scale of violations and abuses of freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) for all in many parts of the world, including in Africa. As the Minister of State responsible for Human Rights, Lord (Tariq) Ahmad of Wimbledon underlined these points at the All-Party Parliamentary Humanist Group Annual General Meeting on 24 May.

Lord Ahmad works closely with the Prime Minister's Special Envoy for FoRB, Fiona Bruce MP. In addition to championing FoRB, Mrs Bruce represents the UK at meetings of the International Religious Freedom or Belief Alliance to advocate for the rights of individuals being discriminated against or persecuted on the basis of their faith or belief, including members of non-religious communities.

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