Addressing those attending the civil society congress plenary section of the International Religious Freedom Summit 2022, Rev. Susan Taylor of the Church of Scientology National Affairs Office in Washington, D.C., emphasized the need for greater cooperation in the face of mounting religious repression internationally.
“With nearly 80 percent of the world's population living in areas where the right to religious freedom is highly restricted, it will be up to civil society working together with government to help curb the atrocities. We need to rethink how the peoples of all countries can help stem the rising tide of religious genocide, murder, incarceration, ‘re-education’ concentration camps, beatings, and governmental control,” she said. “Collaboration has always been one of our great strengths in the international religious freedom field. We need to increase our forces by bringing in other similar groups who are working towards a better world.”
She stressed the importance of human rights education to lay the groundwork to generate commitment and activity in support of the rights of people to practice their own faiths or none or change their faith or religious affiliation. She spoke of the difference in attitude engendered by educating youth on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, citing examples of the social activism generated by the human rights education program sponsored by the Church of Scientology, Youth for Human Rights International.
To achieve the motto of the IRF summit, “religious freedom for everyone, everywhere, all the time,” or create inroads against repression, it will take a groundswell of support.
This year was the second annual International Religious Freedom Summit, held in Washington, DC. More than 1,100 religious leaders and human rights advocates from many nations attended and exchanged ideas on important issues.
Speakers included the President of Guatemala, U.S. members of Congress from both sides of the aisle, members of Parliament, and victims of religious persecution.
Personal testimonies by survivors of horrific abuses raised awareness of the urgency of creating massive and rapid inroads against religious repression.
Led by the IRF Secretariat and the IRF Roundtable, The IRF Summit is the largest civil society-led conference focused on advancing international religious freedom in the world.
The IRF Roundtable was founded in 2010. It is an informal group of individuals from all faiths and none who gather regularly to discuss IRF issues on an off-the-record basis. The IRF Roundtable, which meets weekly, advocates and advises on policies regarding international religious freedom around the world including within the United States.
From its beginnings, the Church of Scientology has recognized that freedom of religion is a fundamental human right. In a world where conflicts are often traceable to intolerance of others’ religious beliefs and practices, the Church has, for more than 50 years, made the preservation of religious liberty an overriding concern.
The Church publishes this blog to help create a better understanding of the freedom of religion and belief and provide news on religious freedom and issues affecting this freedom around the world.