EU passes resolution against persecution of Christians

The European Parliament has passed a resolution condemning persecution against Christians. Particularly countries in Asia including Iraq, China, Vietnam, Turkey, Pakistan, Gaza and the Philippines were shown to be some of the worst offenders in persecuting Christians and violating religious freedom, reports AsiaNews.

The resolution was passed by a margin of 57 to two votes whilst only one person abstained. The resolution referred to a string of violations of religious freedom including acts of violence.

The resolution urges "the governments of the countries concerned to improve the security situation of the Christian communities".

It also "stresses therefore that the public authorities have a duty to protect all religious communities, including Christian communities, from discrimination and repression".

The resolution called for EU institutions to make persecution against Christians a political issue in the countries concerned.

The resolution noted in particular "the seriousness of the situation regarding religious freedom in the People's Republic of China, where the authorities continue to repress any religious expression, particularly by the Catholic Church, many of whose members and bishops have been imprisoned for a number of years and some of whom have died in prison".

Vietnam, meanwhile, was described as a place where "the activities of the Catholic Church and of other religions have been severely repressed, as demonstrated by the serious situation facing the communities of Vietnamese 'montagnards'".