The future of freedom of religion and belief in Malaysia

In January 2019, the Southeast Asian Parliamentarians for Freedom of Religion or Belief (SEAPFoRB), a working group of parliamentarians set up under the joint freedom of religion or belief project of the Asean Parliamentarians for Human Rights (APHR) and the International Panel of Parliamentarians for Freedom of Religion or Belief (IPPFoRB), undertook a fact-finding mission of international parliamentarians to Malaysia to assess the situation of freedom of religion or belief, and how the political climate has changed since the Pakatan Harapan government took office in 2018.

The findings of the mission corroborate SEAPFoRB’s initial assessment that, as a Muslim-majority country, the protection of freedom of religion and belief, especially for religious minorities in Malaysia, remains a challenge despite a few recent positive developments.

In view of this, SEAPForB, in collaboration with Komuniti Muslim Universal Malaysia and Sisters In Islam, organised a Ramadan dialogue to foster collaboration between parliamentarians, faith and civil society leaders to strengthen the protection of freedom of religion and belief in Malaysia.

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