Published: 00:00 GMT Daylight Time - Tuesday 15 May 2007
Barnabas Fund presents Right to Justice Petition to the British Government
Country/Region: UNITED KINGDOM
Yesterday, Monday 14th May, Dr Patrick Sookhdeo, International Director of the Barnabas Fund, presented a petition signed by 92,283 people from the UK and Europe to Ms Susan Hyland, Head of Human Rights, Democracy and Governance Group at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
The signatories of this petition have all expressed their deep concern about the plight of Christian minorities who suffer discrimination and persecution
and their belief that all minorities have a right to justice irrespective of their religion. The situation is growing increasingly urgent as many governments (such as Algeria, Pakistan, and Indonesia) are implementing progressively more repressive legislation, without protest from Western governments. The continuing threat of attack and the intimidation of Christian minorities has been shown by recent events in Pakistan [Link] , Egypt [Link] and Iraq [Link] .
The aim of this petition is to urge the British government to take a strong lead and act vigorously to insist that all governments ensure religious liberty and safeguard the rights of Christian and other religious minorities. The government must demonstrate that the persecution of Christians and the restriction of their religious liberty is unacceptable wherever it takes place.
Barnabas Fund would like to thank everyone who signed this petition and the many who also wrote to their MPs highlighting the suffering that Christian minorities face.
The same petition will be presented to other governments, including Australia and New Zealand, with the signatures of their respective citizens.
Dr Patrick Sookhdeo commented: "The position of Christian minorities is becoming intolerable. We urge Western governments to put pressure on those countries which persecute and discriminate against them and other religious minorities; a concerted effort must be made to bring justice to those who are suffering."