US to host first-ever ministerial meeting to promote religious freedom

Washington (UNA-OIC) � US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Tuesday that the government of the United States will host in Washington its first-ever Ministerial Meeting to Advance Religious Freedom on July 25-26.

I look forward to hosting my counterparts from like-minded governments, as well as representatives of international organizations, religious communities, and civil society to reaffirm our commitment to religious freedom as a universal human right, Pompeo said at the announcement, which coincided with the release of the State Department’s annual report on the state of international religious freedom in 200 countries and territories.

Our Founders understood religious freedom not as the state’s creation, but as the gift of God to every person and a fundamental right for a flourishing society. We’re committed to promoting religious freedom around the world, both now and in the future, he continued.

The ministerial meeting of government and religious leaders, rights advocates, and civil society leaders will be the first ministerial that Pompeo will host as secretary of state, which he said is a very intentional.

For his part, Ambassador-at-large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback, who oversaw the publication of the latest report, said: “Our goal is to protect the freedom of conscience for all people. That means protecting a Muslim, Buddhist, Falun Gong practitioner, or Christian in China and their ability to pray and live out their life.”

Source: International Islamic News Agency