Pompeo on religious freedom: The world must hear the truth

U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo laid out the “dire condition of religious freedom around the world” and highlighted the Trump administration’s efforts to safeguard human dignity.

Photo of Pompeo with quote about America's history of religious freedom (State Dept./Ron Przysucha)Around the world, “more than 80% of mankind lives in areas where religious freedom is suppressed or denied in its entirety,” the secretary told the American Association of Christian Counselors in Nashville, Tennessee, on October 11.

For example:

  • In China, the Chinese Communist Party is detaining and abusing more than 1 million Uyghur Muslims.
  • In Iran, Christian pastors are unlawfully arrested, beaten and detained.
  • In Northern Iraq, the terrorist group ISIS persecutes religious minorities.

Pompeo said the State Department is “using our diplomacy to fix the very conditions that allowed these evils to fester.”

For the last two years, Pompeo has organized and hosted the Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom at the State Department. The conference has brought representatives from around the world to discuss ways to address challenges to religious freedom, including the persecution many religious communities endure, and to highlight stories of religious persecution from the world over.

The State Department also has put visa restrictions on those responsible for the gross human rights abuses in China, Pompeo said.

“And we’ve stopped American companies from exporting certain products to Chinese tech companies that are enabling these very human rights abuses,” Pompeo said in his October 11 remarks. “We know Americans do not want their companies building the machinery of a totalitarian surveillance state.”