June 2021 | True Worship

No Pandemic Pause in Persecution, Says Poland Ministerial

No Pandemic Pause in Persecution, Says Poland Ministerial

Third annual conference to promote international religious freedom, held virtually, highlights how governments have exploited COVID-19.

The cause of international religious freedom has gone more international.

Next year it will take place in Brazil.Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the third Ministerial to Advance Freedom of Religion or Belief was hosted this week outside the United States for the first time—in Poland.

Launched in 2018 by the US State Department, the ministerial brings together the world’s top diplomats to ensure religious freedom remains an integral focus of international foreign policy.

The focus is necessary: 80 percent of the world’s population lives in nations that restrict religious freedom, according to the Pew Research Center.

And the pandemic has only increased persecution.

“The need to expand religious freedoms and protect religious minorities has become a global priority.”

The novel coronavirus took center stage at the two-day conference, hosted virtually by the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.