Title

Deterioration of Religious Liberty in Europe

Wednesday, July 22, 1998
HC-5 U.S. Capitol
Washington D.C., DC 20004
United States
Official Transcript: 
Moderator(s): 
Name: 
Wayne merry
Title Text: 
Senior Advisor
Body: 
Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe
Witnesses: 
Name: 
Willy Fautre
Title: 
Director
Body: 
Human Rights without Frontiers
Name: 
James McCabe
Title: 
Assistant General Counsel
Body: 
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society

This briefing addressed the persisting question of problems of religious liberty and the patterns of discrimination against religious minorities and other belief groups that had developed in a number of countries in the OSCE region in the aftermath of the Cold War. Efforts of improving religious liberty in former communist countries were discussed, as well as the need for spending time and attention on countries farther west, like France, Belgium, and Austria, in which concern for religious minorities was also expressed.

Witnesses testifying at the briefing – including Willy Fautre, Director of Human Rights without Frontiers and James McCabe, Assistant General Counsel of Watchtower Bible and Tract Society – examined the multi-tiered system that European countries employ regarding religion, and the different statuses and treatment of citizens based on where their religion falls within this system. The issues faced by minority religious associations, like being targeted by fiscal services, were also topics of discussion.

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