Russia now Ranked Among Worst Violators of Religious Freedom

Russia’s ongoing crackdown on religious minorities, foreign missionaries, and evangelists has earned it a spot among the worst countries in the world for religious freedom.

The US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), which flags religious freedom violators for the State Department, listed the former Soviet state among six new Tier 1 “countries of particular concern” (CPC) in its latest annual report, released Wednesday.

It is the first time in the commission’s almost 20-year history that Russia has made the list. A total of 16 countries currently hold the CPC designation, and another dozen are being reviewed as Tier 2. [ Source ]

Religious Liberty Showdown

“What’s on the line here is can a state use its own state constitution to treat religious organizations and churches as second-class citizens?” said Erik Stanley, senior counsel for the Alliance Defending Freedom, who will help argue on behalf of Trinity Lutheran. “The state shut the door to Trinity Lutheran solely because of its religious status as a church.”