August 31, 2011

Christian Aid claims tax deal will harm poor countries

by Jan Harris

Christian Aid has called a tax deal between the UK and Switzerland ‘a disgrace’ because of its potential impact on developing countries. The deal will see the Swiss government taxing the funds in UK taxpayers’ Swiss bank accounts and handing the tax over to the UK treasury. While this could generate around £5 billion a […]

August 30, 2011

Assisted dying comments go against Christian beliefs

by Jan Harris

Government adviser Martin Green has told the Daily Telegraph that the UK law on assisted suicide should be reviewed because it is taking away choice and autonomy from patients. Mr Green, a Dementia expert and the chief executive of the English Community Care Association, believes that there should be either a referendum, or a free […]

August 26, 2011

China appoints new governor for Tibet

by Jan Harris

China has appointed Chen Quanguo, an ethnic Han official, to govern Tibet. He replaces Zhang Qingli as part of a restructuring of senior provincial leaders prior to a change in leadership next year. Mr. Zhang oversaw the closure of monasteries in Tibet after riots in 2008, as well as the vilification of the Dalai Lama […]

August 25, 2011

Food prices affecting Muslims during Ramadan

by Jan Harris

Oxfam has chosen the month of Ramadan, a time when Muslims are required to fast from dawn until sunset, to warn that rising food prices have made fasting even more difficult than usual this year. Penny Lawrence, International Director for Oxfam, said: “For many people around the world Ramadan is a time of spiritual reflection […]

August 24, 2011

Amnesty appeals for Irish Traveller eviction to stop

by Jan Harris

Amnesty International has launched an appeal in support of Irish travellers who are facing eviction from Dale Farm in Essex. The human rights organisation is appealing to Basildon Borough Council, which issued the eviction notice, and the Department for Communities and Local Government, to stop the eviction process going ahead. The move would affect 86 […]

August 23, 2011

Church ban reflects Indonesia’s growing religious intolerance

by Jan Harris

A proposal to ban Christian churches on streets with Islamic names is the latest indication that Muslim-dominated Indonesia’s intolerance of Christians is growing. Diani Budiarto, the mayor of Bogor, a city on the island of Java, proposed the controversial move as part of his efforts to block the construction of the Taman Yasmin Indonesian Christian […]

August 22, 2011

Equality Commission backs down over religious rights reform

by Jan Harris

The Equality and Human Rights Commission has watered-down a campaign to support the rights of employees to uphold their religious beliefs in the workplace. In July the commission said it would call on the European Court of Human Rights to introduce reforms ensuring that employers would make “reasonable adjustments” to allow workers to follow their […]

August 12, 2011

Church leaders condemn riots

by Jan Harris

The Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, the Bishop of London Richard Chartres and the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, have all spoken out against the riots that swept across England this week. Dr Williams criticised the education system for failing to teach good citizenship in schools. “Are we prepared to think not only about […]

August 11, 2011

Christian pharmacists concerned over new morning-after pill rules

by Jan Harris

New guidelines on dispensing morning-after-pills and IVF drugs put employers’ rights above an employee’s religious beliefs, according to a report in the Telegraph. Christian pharmacists who believe in the sanctity of life from the moment of conception may object to dispensing morning-after-pills because they prevent a fertilised egg being implanted in the womb. The General […]

August 10, 2011

Restrictions on religion increase globally

by Jan Harris

Restrictions on religion, either by governments or because of social intolerance, increased for one third of the world’s population between 2006 and 2009. Restrictions on religion eased for just one per cent of the world’s population during the same period. The findings by the Pew Forum, show that the situation for followers of religions has […]

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