State Department Separates Religious Freedom from Human Rights in Report

WASHINGTON, DC, June 11, 2012 -- Catholic News Service has reported that the U.S. State Department for the first time has eliminated the status report on religious liberty from its annual human rights report. According to CNS, former US diplomat Thomas Farr, who served in the Clinton and Bush State Departments and as the first Office of International Religious Freedom, speculated that the move may be a reflection of the low priority that the Administration places on religious liberty compare to other issues they place under human rights.

“I mean, it is important to note here that I do not know--I have no personal knowledge of the logic that went into removing religious freedom from the broader human rights report; but I also have observed during the three-and-a-half years of the Obama administration that the issue of religious freedom has been distinctly downplayed,” Farr said

"The reports do not provide in-depth coverage of what has happened to Christians and other religious minorities in predominantly Muslim countries in the Middle East that saw the rise of revolutionary movements in 2011 in which Islamist forces played an instrumental role, CNS reported.

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