Press release: Government commits £12 million to champion freedom of Religion or Belief worldwide


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The Coalition for Religious Equality and Inclusive Development (CREID) programme, funded through UK Aid Connect, will work with faith groups, NGOs and academics to promote religious diversity, with a focus on helping countries around the world to embed freedom of religion or belief policies in poverty reduction and development approaches.

The Prime Minister’s Special Envoy for Freedom of Religion or Belief, Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon said:

This money will go a long way in bolstering the work of civil society and NGOs to promote respect, and the value of religious diversity and tolerance. It will sit alongside the excellent work British diplomats do in flying the flag for human rights.

As the Prime Minister’s Special Envoy on Freedom of Religion or Belief, I will ensure that the UK stands up for everyone’s right to practise or not practise a religion that is in line with their conscience, wherever they are in the world.

International Development Minister Lord Bates said:

Today’s announcement underscores the government’s commitment to empowering people across the world irrespective of religion or belief and builds on the Prime Minister’s pledge to tackle religious prejudice and intolerance in all its forms.

The problems facing the world’s poorest and most excluded people are complex with no single answer; that is why UK Aid Connect is crucial to bringing together different organisations that can work with global communities to find solutions to these problems.

Young people are key to creating a better, more tolerant world. As part of this announcement HMG’s Respect in Education will receive increased funding so that schools in the world’s poorest countries can teach more children about respect for religious diversity.

The announcement follows the government’s recent announcement of a further £1 million funding for places of worship that have been subjected to hate crime attacks.

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