2022

Intolerance always hides a weakness

by Steno Sari — Religious freedom means the possibility of believing in what one likes, as well as not believing, and often includes the fight against dogmatism, prejudice and intolerance. Throughout history, it has cost an incalculable number of lives burnt in bloody religious conflicts. Safeguarding this freedom concerns the essence of human dignity and can rightly be considered the litmus test for the respect of all other fundamental rights and freedoms, since it is their synthesis and keystone.

Human Rights, China and the Winter Olympics – Boycott or not boycott?

The Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games are upon us and the debate on whether to participate or boycott the event that will give more and more prestige to China, to its government by mitigating or hiding its policies of violation of human rights, is more current than ever. On the subject we publish an article signed by the scholar Zsuzsa Anna Ferenczy for Human Rights Without Frontiers.

The Holocaust of Jehovah's Witnesses. Persecuted and forgotten

It takes courage. It would have been enough to fill out an abjuration form in which the prisoner declared to disassociate himself from Jehovah's Witnesses. But almost no one signed it even though they were aware of the fate that awaited them. Another great lesson in moral and spiritual integrity offered by the Christian congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses. A rare good, in this and any other age.

Another giant statue of Buddha torn down in Drago County

Tibet Watch — Monks and civilians arrested and tortured in detention amid a wave of demolitions. Tibet Watch has learned from sources that another giant statue of Buddha was torn down amid a wave of ongoing demolitions in Drago County that has also seen a 99-foot Buddha statue, 45 prayer wheels, and a Tibetan monastic school torn down. Several monks and civilians were detained for expressing their disapproval. They have been given little food while in detention and at least some have been tortured.

Another Christian sentenced to death on blasphemy charges in Pakistan

CLAAS (06.01.2022) – A Christian man, Zafar Bhatti, 58, has been sentenced to death by the Pakistan session court of Rawalpindi, after being charged with blasphemy in 2012.

He is accused of sending blasphemous text messages from his phone but has always denied the allegation against him.

Bhatti faced a difficult situation when in the same year the District Bar Association Rawalpindi passed a resolution that no lawyers of District Bar Association would appear in any case under Section 295 of the Pakistan Penal Code on behalf of any accused.

RUSSIA: "Foreign agents", "undesirable organisations", and freedom of religion or belief

by Victoria Arnold — Russia has used increasingly strict legislation on "foreign agents" (a term which has connotations of spying) and "undesirable organisations" to curtail, complicate, or prohibit the activities of organisations which promote human rights and monitor their violation, including that of freedom of religion and belief. This "indirectly affects the people human rights defenders stand up for", says Aleksandr Verkhovsky of the SOVA Centre for Information and Analysis (branded a "foreign agent").

China destroys a Buddha statue to destroy its religion

While the West is celebrating the holiday season with, New Year and Epiphany, and China prepares to celebrate the Chinese New Year, the Tibetan people mourn the destruction - yet another - of a symbol of their millennial religion and culture implemented by the despotic and dismal dictatorship of the Chinese Communist Party. A little less than a month to the start of the 2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing, China is once again showing the international community its true face in disregard for the human rights that animate the Games and the feelings of the other participating nations.