- Published on Sunday, 23 August 2009 01:33
- Written by John Draper
- Hits: 52235
An organization called the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) monitors freedom of religion in countries around the world. They then make recommendations to the U.S. State Department that action be taken against these countries although in fact generally little or no action is taken. There is no discrimination by Religion in their reports - Christian, Hindu or Muslim discrimination are all equally monitored for atrocities or lesser problems.
Countries identified with a problem are then listed as
- Countries of particular concern - these are countries that a major offenders in their curbing of religious freedom.
- Watch list countries - these countries are at less than the desirable level of freedom.
Updated May 2013
A report is issued annually in May and the reports from 2009 to 2013 are linked below:
Ratings for 2013 (Report dated May) - in alphabetical order.
Tier 1 Countries
Tier 2 Countries
It's fairly clear that Muslim countries are the most common offender although there are also other serious offenders who are not Muslim (notably China, Burma and North Korea). I'm surprised that Somalia is not on the list and I see that Egypt is still on the list despite their recent "revolution".
Although USCIRF does not spell it out, it is obvious to me that people in the Countries of Particular Concern have no freedom of religion. And people in the watch list countries have limits to their freedom of religion.
Of course, freedom of religion is but a first step to freedom from religion which is when there will be true individual freedom for everyone.
Another study of the freedom in countries has been done by the World Bank. They do not mention religion but you can see that freedoms are less available in Muslim countries. Two exceptions are North Korea (cult of the leader) and Myanmar (Buddhist). But see for yourself:
Voice and Accountability Rank, 2009
Basic freedoms, human rights abuses, free press, fair elections
Source: Worldwide Governance indicators - World bank
100 is perfect, 0 means no voice or accountability
For a list showing all countries, download (small) pdf here.