The European Union has approved a resolution condemning the persecution of Christians in some parts of the world.
According the SIR news agency, Mario Mauro, vice president of the European Parliament and sponsor of the measure, said, “Religious freedom is the test for other freedoms and rights, and the persecution of Christians throughout the world is one of the greatest challenges to human dignity.”
The measure, which has the support of the Socialist Party, the Liberal Democratic Party, and others, condemns all acts of violence against Christian communities especially in Africa and Asia, and it calls on the countries in question “to provide the necessary guarantees for religious freedom and the security of Christian communities.”
In addition to mentioning several cases of persecution of Christians in Pakistan, Gaza, Turkey, China, Vietnam, Sudan, Iraq and Syria, the measure “deplores the kidnapping of Father Giancarlo Gossi in the Philippines, strongly condemns the murder of journalist Hrant Dink and of Father Andrea Santoro in Turkey, as well as underscores the problems of freedom of expression in China and repression in Vietnam.
“Thanks to today’s vote—which had only two votes against and one abstention—the European Commission will have to take steps to develop and plan for cooperation and aid to be given on the condition that the principle of respect for true religious freedom is respected,” Mauro said.
Lastly, the resolution also emphasized “the importance of dialogue between religions in order to promote peace and understanding between people, and calls on religious leaders to fight “against extremisms and to promote mutual respect,” Mauro stated.