Minister Lipavsky opened the International Religious Freedom or Belief Alliance Ministerial Conference

Jan Lipavský @JanLipavsky

Minister of Foreign Affairs Jan Lipavský opened the ministerial conference of the International Religious Freedom or Belief Alliance (IRFBA) entitled “Freedom of Religion under Authoritarian Regimes” on Tuesday 28 November 2023 at the Czernin Palace. During the meeting, state delegations, special commissioners, experts and other prominent figures will discuss in particular the misuse of religion for political purposes and religious life in the age of digital surveillance.

“Our activities in this Alliance are a natural part of the commitment to promote human rights. We take our own responsibilities to pursue religious tolerance domestically and internationally. We also fully realize that in order to succeed it has to be a shared responsibility of the international community,” said minister Lipavsky in his opening remarks.

From 28 to 30 November 2023, the conference will feature, among other things, panels on building resilience and the role of new technologies on the suppression of religious or belief minorities. The main panel will also analyse Central Europe’s historical experience with communist rule and help understand the means by which repressive regimes currently restrict freedom of religion or belief.

The conference is being held in Prague with the participation of members of the IRFBA alliance, which now includes 37 countries and 3 observer countries. Organized by the Special Representative on the Holocaust, Interreligious Dialogue and Religious Freedom, the Institute of International Relations and other partners, the conference also aims to engage young people in the struggle for religious freedom and to point out the role of women in this struggle.

The conference will also include an exhibition football match at the Great Strahov Stadium. The aim of this event, which is organised in collaboration with the leading Czech football team AC Sparta Prague, is to highlight how sport and youth engagement can build interfaith and intercultural communities that promote a shared culture of respect.

“Support for democracy, human rights, and civil society has been one of the main features of Czech foreign policy. We know from our own bitter experience where appeasement leads. I was glad to open the ministerial on freedom of religion or belief at @CzechMFA,” posted the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic.

Explore more