Identity Cards: Religion

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 4th March 2020.

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Photo of Lord Hylton Lord Hylton Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with governments of countries that require religious affiliation to be stated on identity cards or other official documents about such a requirement.

Photo of Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State, The Minister of State, Department for International Development

The UK opposes the requirement that religious affiliation should be stated on identity cards or other official documents. In Myanmar for example, the UK has supported the recommendations of the Rakhine Advisory Commission's to reform the 1982 Citizenship Law, and has urged the Myanmar Government to fully implement them. This would ensure that citizenship, and ID cards, are not linked to ethnic or religious status. Defending and promoting Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB) is a longstanding human rights priority for the British Government. We actively promote the importance of FoRB and tackling discrimination on the basis of religious identity through our diplomatic activity both bilterally, and through multilateral fora such as the UN.

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