Latest Freedom of religion News

Terror & tourism: Xinjiang eases its grip, but fear remains

Oct. 10, 2021 06:43 AM EDT

Four years after Beijing launched a brutal crackdown that swept up to a million or more Uyghurs and other mostly Muslim minorities into detention camps and prisons, its control of China’s far west Xinjiang region has entered a new era. Chinese authorities have scaled back many of the most...

Terror & tourism: Xinjiang eases its grip, but fear remains

Oct. 10, 2021 03:23 AM EDT

XINJIANG, China (AP) — The razor wire that once ringed public buildings in China’s far northwestern Xinjiang region is nearly all gone. Gone, too, are the middle school uniforms in military camouflage and the armored personnel carriers rumbling around the homeland of...

Texas executions face delays over religious rights claims

Oct. 09, 2021 15:46 PM EDT

HOUSTON (AP) — Executions in the nation’s busiest capital punishment state face delays amid legal questions over Texas’ refusal to allow spiritual advisers to touch inmates and pray aloud as condemned individuals are being put to death. It’s unclear when Texas may...

Rohingya refugee leader shot dead in Bangladesh camp

Sep. 30, 2021 04:35 AM EDT

DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) — An international representative of ethnic Rohingya refugees was shot to death in a camp in Bangladesh by unknown gunmen late Wednesday, police said. Mohibullah, who was in his 40s, was a teacher who emerged as a key refugee leader and a...

Advocates fear US weighing climate vs. human rights on China

Sep. 18, 2021 08:35 AM EDT

U.S. envoy John Kerry’s diplomatic quest to stave off the worst scenarios of global warming is meeting resistance from China, the world's biggest climate polluter, which is adamant that the United States ease confrontation over other matters if it wants Beijing to...

Another Texas execution delayed on religious freedom claims

Sep. 16, 2021 18:13 PM EDT

HOUSTON (AP) — Another Texas inmate has had his execution delayed over claims the state is violating his religious freedom by not letting his spiritual adviser lay hands on him at the time of his lethal injection. Ruben Gutierrez was set to be executed on Oct. 27 for...

Americans less positive about civil liberties: AP-NORC poll

Sep. 10, 2021 08:02 AM EDT

Ten years after the 9/11 attacks, Americans were reasonably positive about the state of their rights and liberties. Today, after 20 years, not as much. That’s according to a poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research that builds on work...

Alabama: Pastor can hold inmate's hand during execution

Sep. 09, 2021 14:27 PM EDT

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama said it will allow a death row inmate's pastor to hold his hand during a lethal injection next month, a decision that was made to end litigation over the issue. Lawyers for Alabama wrote in a June court document that inmates can now have...

Texas man gets execution delay over pastor’s touch request

Sep. 08, 2021 22:47 PM EDT

HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A Texas death row inmate won a reprieve Wednesday evening from execution for killing a convenience store worker during a 2004 robbery that garnered $1.25 after claiming the state was violating his religious freedom by not letting his pastor lay hands on him at the...

Jeff Colyer has cancer, drops out of Kansas governor’s race

Aug. 30, 2021 18:42 PM EDT

MISSION, Kan. (AP) — Former Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer announced Monday that he is dropping out of the 2022 race for governor after being diagnosed with prostate cancer. “While I have always focused on helping others, for the next few weeks I am going to focus on my...