The Faith and Freedom Summit, a coalition of faith-based and non-faith-based NGOs, has launched a call to all MEPs and Spitzenkandidats to sign a pledge that reads as
“I pledge that I will uphold and defend the freedom of conscience and religion of all individuals by rejecting and speaking out against bigotry, discrimination, harassment and violence; and so build a more equitable society for all.
The Faith and Freedom Summit had its pre-launch event in June in Solvay Library in Brussels, with speakers from all faiths, including Catholics, Evangelical Christians, Muslims and other minority religions, as well as human rights activists and European scholars. EU Special Envoy for Freedom of Religion or Belief outside of Europe and former Commissioner Jan Figel was one of the keynote speakers as well as his US counterpart, US Ambassador at large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback.
With the 2019 European elections in view, the purpose of the coalition is to propose and develop initiatives that will put Freedom of Religion or Belief in Europe back in the spotlights based on the postulate that EU citizens must enjoy a real freedom of religion or belief, at every level, and that this fundamental right is not given the importance it deserves in the EU institutions, and in the EU instruments that protect the various freedoms of EU citizens.
On Tuesday 11 December, a call to sign the above pledge was sent to all MEPs. The ones who sign it will be featured on organisation’s website. The next step will be to get new candidates to pledge too, in order to let EU citizens identify who is supporting freedom of religion and who’s not.
The Faith and Freedom Summit, is a coalition comprised of The All Faiths Network, the European Interreligious Forum for Religious Freedom, the Fundacion Para la Mejora de la Vida, La Cultura y la Sociedad, CAP Freedom of Conscience, the European Office of the Church of Scientology for Public Affairs and Human Rights, the Gerard Noodt Foundation for Freedom of Religion or Belief, the European Muslim Initiative for Social Cohesion, and Soteria International.