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Saudi Arabia: Religious Freedom

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 7th June 2016.

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Photo of Dawn Butler Dawn Butler Labour, Brent Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps he is taking to promote religious freedom in Saudi Arabia; and what recent representations the Government has made to Saudi Arabia on that matter.

Photo of Tobias Ellwood Tobias Ellwood The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

We strongly support the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, which is restricted in Saudi Arabia, reflecting views which are widely held in Saudi society. The authorities are encouraging reforms at a pace that is acceptable to Saudi society. This includes allowing foreign workers in Saudi Arabia to practice religions other than Islam in private.

We regularly raise human rights issues, including in relation to the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, with the Saudi Arabian authorities.

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