15 NOV 2017
World Watch List
Thank you very much for taking the time to email me about the launch of the 2018 World Watch List report on the 17th of January at 4pm, it is much appreciated.
Unfortunately, I have prior commitments that day and will be unable to attend, however I hope the following information on this topic from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office is of interest:
The persecution suffered by millions of Christians across the world who seek only to practise their beliefs openly, in peace and safety is appalling. Here in the West those freedoms are all too often taken for granted.
This is an issue upon which there is much Parliamentary consensus, and that within Government, much cross-departmental work is being done on these issues. The UK's project work overseas is an important part of this effort to promote and protect religious freedoms. During this tax year, the Government is spending £758,000 on freedom of religion projects worldwide, including in Pakistan and Iraq.
One project is helping to develop lesson plans for secondary school teachers in the Middle East and North Africa. The aim is to teach children about religious tolerance, religious acceptance, and the absolute right to freedom of religion or belief. Teaching children in that way is a vital part of promoting tolerance and respect at grassroots level and of helping to build future resilience against extremism.
The UK Government remains determined to promote and defend human rights more generally.
UK activity is both multilateral, through institutions such as the UN, striving to build and maintain consensus, and bilateral, though the UK's diplomatic network.
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