Freedom of Religion & Belief

Freedom of Religion & Belief

What is the problem?

Freedom of religion or belief faces unique and growing challenges globally. In Southeast Asia, issues related to freedom of religion or belief include hate speech against religious minorities, persecution and discrimination of minorities, and repressive laws, such as those criminalising blasphemy or restricting the construction of places of worship.

Improved access to the Internet and social media has also created new avenues to harass people of various faiths with little or no consequence, while increasing political polarisation exacerbates the issue further.

Translation of Key International Standards

What are we doing about it?

APHR is working to ensure that incidences of religious intolerance become outliers, rather than a harmful new normal. MPs play an important role in protecting people's freedom of religion or belief, and APHR works closely with its members in parliament to prevent the passing of repressive laws or to repeal existing ones, as well as outside of parliament to promote social cohesion among communities.

APHR also works with the International Panel of Parliamentarians for Freedom of Religion or Belief (IPPFoRB) to monitor and provide resources for FORB-related developments in the region.

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ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights (APHR) was founded in June 2013 with the objective of promoting democracy and human rights across Southeast Asia. Our founding members include many of the region's most progressive Members of Parliament (MPs), with a proven track record of human rights advocacy work.

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