PM Boris Johnson called to deliver on promise for persecuted Christians by charity

Tue 23 Jul 2019
By Heather Preston

On Boris Johnson's appointment as Prime Minister today, Christian freedom charity, Open Doors UK is urging him to uphold his pledge to support those facing persecution.

Following the release of a review into the persecution of Christians earlier this month, the new Conservative Party leader vowed to protect religious freedom if he was elected as Prime Minister.

Boris Johnson tweeted: "I welcome the Foreign Office's review published today into the persecution of Christians abroad. If I am fortunate enough to become PM, I will always prioritise protecting religious freedoms and stand up for those facing persecution."

 

 

Commissioned in December by Jeremy Hunt, the report's findings showed that 80 percent of religiously motivated attacks in the world are against Christians and that this should now be called 'Christophobia'.

The review used evidence from the Open Doors World Watch List, the annual ranking of the top 50 countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian. Open Doors also submitted detailed evidence about persecution of Christians in specific countries and situations.

The Bishop of Truro released a number of recommendations alongside the report, which parliament committed to accept in full.

Responding to Boris' tweet, Open Doors UK and Ireland's CEO Henrietta Blyth said: "I am delighted that Boris Johnson said that he would prioritise protecting religious freedoms as Prime Minister and that he would stand up for those facing persecution. I look forward to seeing quick action to deliver greater protection for religious minorities."

"Open Doors is committed to working with all politicians to ensure that real and meaningful change is delivered to persecuted Christians through the implementation of the recommendations of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's review into the persecution of Christians abroad."

Open Doors is calling for the government to focus on key countries where it can have the most impact on persecution, ensuring the appointment of a permanent Prime Minister's special envoy on freedom of religious belief and mainstreaming religion within the Foreign Office and the Department for International Development, to engage with local communities and faith leaders.

 

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