Extreme secularism is claiming too many victims

2020. 07. 10.

On Thursday, the European Parliament hold a debate on the EU’s 2019 Human Rights Annual Report. In his written statement, Hungarian Christian Democrat MEP György Hölvényi emphasized: “If Europe, guided by extreme secularism, is silent on violations against religious minorities, it commits complicity in the persecution and death of millions of people around the world.”

The EPP Group politician underlined: “We can assess as a substantial progress that the discrimination and persecution of religious minorities receive special attention in the report. It is also a result of the persistent work of several of my fellow colleagues that we have come this far. However, unfortunately there are also differences between the report and the reality.”

It is long-time experience that EU does not put enough pressure on governments that violate religious freedom in the world. Therefore, repressive regimes simply see the EU attitude as a consent. As a result, the governments concerned are free to continue violations, including against religious minorities. What needs to be done is clear: Europe must be strong and consistent. EU diplomacy must speak up whenever possible to protect persons and communities persecuted for their religious beliefs, both bilaterally and in multilateral fora.

In his statement, MEP Hölvényi stressed: “For Europe, taking action to protect persecuted Christians is not only a religious but a human rights issue. Persecuted communities and strangely also their persecutors, simply see Europe as their potential main supporter worldwide, the carrier of the Christian heritage.”

The politician added: “As Co-chair of the Interreligious Dialogue Working Group of the EPP Group, together with my fellow Members, as before, we will continue to be partners of the European Commission in the fight for religious freedom.”