EU told to strengthen mandate of religious freedom envoy

By WorldWatch Monitor – The European Union needs to develop an overarching religious freedom policy strategy, and strengthening the mandate of the Special Envoy is an important step towards this, writes CSW’s Amy Shepherd for Brussels-based news site The European Post. The position of the Special Envoy for Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB) outside the EU was created in May 2016. Since then the Slovak politician Ján Figeľ has not only used his role to represent the EU in its engagement with religious freedom as a human right, he has also “valuably affirmed and encouraged people worldwide working to protect and defend FoRB in challenging country contexts”, says Shepherd, CSW’s EU Advocacy Manager. She says Figeľ has set a standard for EU

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Four Assyrians Elected to Swedish Parliament

By AINA News – Four Assyrians were elected to the Swedish Parliament in the national elections which took place on September 9. They are Robert Hannah from the Liberal Party (Liberalerna), Tony Haddou from the Left Party (Vänsterpartiet), Robert Halef from the Christian Democrats (Kristdemokraterna) and Ibrahim Baylan from the Social Democrats (Socialdemokraterna). Ibrahim Baylan has a long political career and served as minister of energy in the last Swedish government. Mr. Hanna and Mr. Halef both won their relection bids. Mr Haddou, from the Left Party, is newly elected and represents the constituency of Gothenburg. Five other Swedish Assyrians were also running in the elections. The Assyrian community in Sweden, numbering 150,000 or 1.5 percent of the population, is

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Egypt: Unprecedented crackdown on freedom of expression under al-Sisi turns Egypt into open-air prison

By Amnesty International – The crackdown on freedom of expression under Egyptian President Abdelfattah al-Sisi has reached alarming new levels unparalleled in Egypt’s recent history, Amnesty International said today as it launched a campaign calling for the unconditional and immediate release of all those who have been detained solely for peacefully expressing their views. The campaign, “Egypt, an Open-Air Prison for Critics”, is being launched in response to the unprecedented severity of the crackdown in Egypt, as people around the country increasingly express discontent with the economic and political situation. Amnesty International invites supporters from around the world to show solidarity with those risking their freedom to express their views by writing to the Egyptian government and calling for an

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Coptic Solidarity’s 3rd Annual Modern Coptic Martyrs Remembrance Day

By Coptic Solidarity –  Coptic Solidarity invites you to join us in commemorating and seeking justice for the many modern Coptic martyrs who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for their faith at Coptic Solidarity’s 3rd Annual Modern Coptic Martyrs Remembrance Day. This event is open to the public and media and will be hosted on October 3, at the US Capitol Visitor Center, Room 200, from 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM. Please RSVP to coptadvocacy@copticsolidarity.icu Confirmed Guest Speakers Include: Dr. Jonathan Adly: Founder – History of the Copts Podcast  Gary Bauer: Commissioner – The US Commission on International Religious Freedom Dr. Mark Eid: Executive Committee Member – Coptic Solidarity Neil Hicks: Senior Director for Advocacy – Cairo Institute for Human

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البابا تواضروس يحشد الأقباط في أمريكا لاستقبال السيسي

القاهرة ـ «القدس العربي» – انتقادات واسعة واتهامات طاولت زيارة البابا تواضروس الثاني، بابا الإسكندرية وبطريركية الكرازة المرقسية، إلى الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية، باعتبارها جاءت في إطار التمهيد والحشد لزيارة الرئيس المصري عبد الفتاح السيسي المرتقبة إلى هناك، خلال الشهر الجاري. ويشارك السيسي في أعمال الجمعية العامة للأمم المتحدة الـ73 التي تبدأ في الخامس والعشرين من سبتمبر/ أيلول الجاري، حيث من المقرر أن يلقي كلمة في جلسات المناقشة العامة. مجدي خليل، أحد مؤسسي حركة الإصلاح القبطي المعاصر، نشر تسجيلاً مصوراً على صفحته الرسمية على «الفيسبوك»، قال فيه «زيارة تواضروس إلى الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية تأتي في إطار الترتيب للزيارة المرتقبة للسيسي». وأضاف: «ليست لدينا مشكلة شخصية لا مع الرئيس عبد الفتاح السيسي ولا مع البابا تواضروس، لكن يجب أن نذكر أنه بعد

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Sisi to attend 73rd UN General Assembly session: Diplomats

By Egypt Independent – Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi will address the general debate of the 73rd session for the UN General Assembly, held from September 18 to October 5 at the UN Headquarters in New York. Diplomatic sources revealed that Sisi could meet with US President Donald Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macaron and Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conti. Sources added that Sisi would hold meetings with US members of House of Representatives and House of Senates to present the Egypt’s vision concerning regional issues and enhance the bilateral relations. The president will discuss the crises in Syria, Libya and Yemen and the importance the US holds in reviving peace talks between Palestine

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