Mr. Speaker, I commend individuals like Nguyen Van Ly, Gao Zhisheng, Joseph Zen Ze-kiun and others who continue to struggle to promote freedom.
As Canadians, we should bear in mind that the rights we enjoy are not always shared by others around the world. Criminalization for apostasy and blasphemy disproportionately affects the religious minorities.
Regrettably, egregious violations of the right to religious freedom against individuals continue. Some examples include: Baha'is and Sufis facing mistreatment in Iran; Christians being forced out of Iraq; Copts facing attacks by extremists in Egypt; and Ahmadis continuing to face discrimination in Pakistan.
Sadly, places of worship, including churches, mosques, synagogues, shrines and monasteries, have been attacked or vandalized.
Our government will continue to promote freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law around the world.