In both the global north and south, religious, national, and cultural fundamentalisms and extremisms are sustained by exclusionary ideologies based on rights-diminishing narratives of religion, ethnonational identity, and cultural supremacy. These narratives are often perpetuated in the name of freedom of religion and belief, and are, at times, codified into law. The application of such laws, policies, and practices prohibits equality for groups and individuals across the globe, including members of religious minorities, freethinkers, humanists, political dissidents, and human rights activists, who are experiencing unjustified violations to their rights to freedom of religion and belief and freedom of expression, often with little to no redress offered. These rights violations persist despite steps taken by the international community to address them.
This side event will focus on maximizing synergies between the various existing frameworks by highlighting case studies of initiatives and programmatic work by civil society organizations, UN agencies and governments. It also aims to create space to foster discussion on the value of increasing “religious literacy,” as well as “religious freedom literacy,” among the actors tasked with responding to human rights violations in international and diplomacy spaces.
Palais des Nations