Skip to main content

UN: Defamation of Religion

Volume 704: debated on Tuesday 7 October 2008

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What is their stance on the resolutions on defamation of religion proposed by members of the United Nations Human Rights Council. [HL5344]

The UK has consistently voted against resolutions on defamation of religion in the UN Human Rights Council. Under international human rights law it is individuals (and not religions) who have rights, beliefs or philosophies. The UK is concerned that the concept of defamation of religion can be used to undermine human rights such as freedom of expression, freedom of information and freedom of religion itself. We strongly believe that freedom of expression and freedom of religion go hand in hand and that both rights are complementary and necessary in a democratic society.