The United Nations stigmatises the Japanese government's guidelines on 'cults'.

In a recent article, Professor Massimo Introvigne reported on an alarming increase in incidents of violence perpetrated in Japan against members of the Christian Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses and an equally alarming increase – according to Jehovah's Witnesses of up to 638 percent – of hate crimes and hate speeches.

Is there a right not to participate in war?

In the Anno Domini 2024, according to the legal system of the states, such a right is not contemplated. On the other hand, there is the military crime of desertion and the impossibility for an individual to opt out of participating in the war event, which, as is known, causes death and destruction. For this reason, Ukrainian citizen Dmytro Zelinsky - a faithful member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church which prohibits the use of weapons - was sentenced to three years in prison. His refusal to participate in the war event is not covered by a person's rights.

The Europe of those who don't believe

Preface, in the Italian version, to the volume Non-believer's Europe: models of secularism, individual statuses, collective rights, edited by A. Orioli, Nessun dogma, Rome, 2019, currently being printed, which collects the proceedings of the Conference, with the same title, organised by the U.A.A.R. and held at the European Parliament (Brussels, 22-23 March 2018). It is published by kind permission of the Publisher Stato, Chiese e pluralismo confessionale.

MIVILUDES caught (again) red-handed

The anti-cult government agency MIVILUDES (Mission Interministérielle de Vigilance et de Lutte contre les Dérives Sectaires) received another 'slap in the face' from none other than its home court, the Paris Administrative Court, which certified MIVILUDES' malfeasance in packaging and spreading false news on religious minorities - in this case, the Jehovah's Witnesses - contemptuously describing them as 'cults' and attributing to them deviant sectarian behaviours that (...)

Anti-cultists at work in Argentina against the Yoga School

"Repeat a lie a hundred, a thousand, a million times and it will become a truth" is a phrase attributed to Nazi hierarch Joseph Goebbels, Minister of the Propaganda of the Third Reich. Whether the attribution is correct or not, this practice is constantly used in all spheres to try to inculcate in others or in the public opinion a certain modus pensandi (way of thinking) and, consequently, a certain modus operandi. It is certainly used by the anti-cultists, as repeatedly reported on this site.

Turkey, Constitutional Court: Expulsion of Protestant leaders does not violate freedom of faith

The Protestant community, with more than 170 communities scattered throughout the country and 8,000 adherents, was in the crosshairs. For the judges, expelling or banning entry on the basis of intelligence reports does not constitute a violation of religious practice. A majority decision, opposed by the former president. In the meantime, there is renewed talk of a possible reopening of the Greek Orthodox seminary in Halki in the near future.

A conference in Rome to discuss the role of States in respect to Religious Freedom

On 30 May, Marco Respinti, member of FOB's Advisory Council, took part as a speaker in the international conference “Freedom of Belief and Religious Recognition: Current State and Perspectives”, organized by the Church of Scientology of Rome in collaboration with the Observatory on Religious Entities, Ecclesiastical Heritage and Non-Profit Organizations of Campania University ‘Luigi Vanvitelli’ of Naples.

Hate Crimes Epidemic Against the Jehovah’s Witnesses in Japan: Who Is Responsible?

Documents prove that private anti-cult organizations had a key role in the creation of government documents that caused a surge of hate speech and violence.

by Massimo Introvigne — In June 2023, while peacefully engaging in preaching, a female Jehovah’s Witness in her 70s was assaulted by a 57-year-old man.

Ban on Islamic headscarf in Flemish schools admissible

Ban on visible symbols of belief in the official education system of the Flemish Community not incompatible with Article 9 of the Convention

Registrar of the European Court (16.05.2024) - In its decision in the case of Mikyas and Others v. Belgium (application no. 50681/20) the European Court of Human Rights has, by a majority, declared the application inadmissible. The decision is final.

New law on 'sectarian abuses' under review by the Constitutional Council

The outcry over the new French law that has established the crime of "psychological submission" aimed at "strengthening the fight against sectarian drifts" and, from bad to worse, the crime of incitement to refuse treatment or the adherence to unconventional practices, is not fading. But the most attentive have not missed the fact that the new crime seriously endangers freedom of religion or belief, an old target of French laicity. Also because in all of this there is the unwieldy hand of MIVILUDES. 

Sweden like France: persecutory behaviour against new religions by the authorities intensifies

While France, through the government agency MIVILUDES, is targeting the followers of MISA Yoga and its spiritual leader Gregorian Bivolaru, Sweden, which has always been seen as a vanguard of tolerance, inclusiveness and human rights, has unexpectedly engaged in persecution of a new Muslim religious movement, the Ahmadi Religion of Peace and Light. The director of Human Rights Without Frontiers, Willy Fautré gave a detailed account of this, which we publish below.

Today is the 7th anniversary of the banning of Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia

"The [Orthodox] Church does not appeals for heretics, members of cults or dissidents to be subjected to prosecution. However, the decision to ban Jehovah's Witnesses is to be considered a positive act in the fight against the spread of cultic ideas, which have nothing in common with Christianity." These were the words with which Metropolitan Ilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Council for External Affairs of the Russian Church, greeted the banning of Jehovah's Witnesses occurred in Russia 7 years ago, on April 20, 2017.

MIVILUDES at work: MISA Yoga believers and their spiritual leader Gregorian Bivolaru arrested in France

Under the pretext that the number of "saisines" (dubious and controversial reports) received by the MIVILUDES was increasing, on November 15, 2023, Sabrina Agresti-Roubache, Minister Delegate for Citizenship and Urban Development in the French government and MIVILUDES superintendent, presented a bill to "strengthen the fight against cultic deviances." Today, thanks to an article in The European Times® NEWS (reproduced below) signed by Willy Fautré, director o

The French government repudiates the motto 'Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité'.

"Approving that law would be a mistake for France," wrote Fabrizio d'Agostini, FOB's scientific advisor and founding member, regarding the bill to strengthen the fight against sectarian deviance that the French government approved despite the Senate's contrary opinion. "The history of France, but also of humanity, is 'chock-full' of similar laws, sometimes less refined, sometimes more brutal, mostly against religious minorities but not only and they have always been bloody stories of death, pain, suffering. They still are."

Italy, the Great Ramadan Scare and the Need for a “Mature Secularity”

A public school’s decision to give its students (many of whom are Muslims) a day off for Eid al Fitr has generated unnecessary controversies.

By Alessandro Amicarelli — On March 17, 1861, with the proclamation made in Turin of the newly established Kingdom of Italy, the result of the annexation of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies to the Kingdom of Sardinia, the first phase of united Italy began. It was a new sovereign state with the House of Savoy at its head and the Roman Catholic religion as the state religion.

Religious Freedom starring at the National Peace Symposium 2024

On March 9, 2024, in London, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at (AMJ) hosted the 18th National Peace Symposium. Among the many guests were Alessandro Amicarelli, Chairman of FOB, and Marco Respinti, member of FOB's Advisory Council and editor-in-chief of the academic publication The Journal of CESNUR (Center for Studies on New Religions) and the CESNUR project  Bitter Winter: A Magazine on Religious Liberty and Human Rights.

Thirty years of activities of the "Italian Islamic Religious Community" (COREIS), with a memory of Shaykh ‘Abd Al-Wahid Pallavicini

On Wednesday, February 28, 2024, an important conference on interreligious dialogue was held in Milan, Italy, at the State University, on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the "Italian Islamic Religious Community" (COREIS), with the participation of scholars and representatives from the Jewish, Christian and Islamic worlds.