UN heralds official day for victims of violence against religion or belief
The United Nations has designated 22 August as an International Day for Victims of Acts of Violence who are attacked because of their religion or belief and invited all countries, organisations and individuals to observe the day for the first time this year.
Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz recalled the targeting of Christians by Islamist suicide bombers in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday, the extremist attack on Muslims in Christchurch, and other acts of violence as he introduced the draft resolution at the UN General Assembly on 28 May.
"The world has been experiencing an unprecedented rise of violence against religious communities and people belonging to religious minorities," he said, adding that it was unacceptable.
He added that the new International Day would aim to honour the victims and survivors, who are often forgotten.
Czaputowicz also said that in some countries even practising religion at home is banned and that in others minorities are often targeted.
The resolution, co-sponsored by Brazil, Canada, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Nigeria, Pakistan, Poland and the United States, was adopted by consensus by the UN General Assembly.