Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on the findings of the U.S. State Department’s 2017 document, “International Religious Freedom Report,” which was released on May 29 (his remarks focus exclusively on the state of religious liberty in Muslim-run nations):
The results are not encouraging. In most nations where Muslims rule, religious liberty is either crushed altogether or it barely exists. Of the 15 nations from the Middle East and North Africa, only four—Egypt, Jordan, Libya, and Tunisia—have any religious liberty safeguards. Iran has the worst record. Of the 5 nations from South and Central Asia (the last five on the appended list), only Bangladesh is comparable to the four from the Middle East and North Africa in providing for some semblance of religious liberty.
We expect communist nations like North Korea to oppress people of faith, but when the rulers of a world religion do so—in the name of God or their spiritual leader—it is all the more disturbing. Fortunately, the record of the two other monotheistic religions, Christianity and Judaism, is quite good.
When people are punished for converting to another religion—including imposition of the death penalty—we are dealing with evil. We look forward to seeing how Secretary of State Mike Pompeo handles this problem. We certainly wish him all the best.
To read a selective summary of the Report, taken verbatim, click here.