A new US Commission on International Religious Freedom says a wealth of research suggests that a society’s level of religious freedom is linked to its prosperity and peace.
Addressing British MPs in the Houses of Parliament, the commission’s chairman said religious freedom was ‘a prerequisite for democracy’.
Dr Daniel Mark told the Parliamentary group, with the rise of authoritarianism around the world, they were at a critical junction in the fight for freedom of religion.
He warned of increasing scenarios where the demands of national security served as a pretext for denying religious freedom.
Dr Mark said because religious freedom also opens the door to other freedoms – like expression, assembly and association – it’s likely no surprise that it’s the right, more than any other, for which people are most willing to suffer and die.