Shadow Report on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians in Europe

December 2010 – Vienna

The Austrian-based NGO The Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians has issued a Shadow Report in connection with the OCSE/ODIHR Supplementary Human Dimension Meeting on Religious Freedom, just concluded in Vienna. The report, compiled under the direction of Dr. Gudrun Kugler, Mts, details dozens of instances during the period 2005-2010 of intolerance and discrimination against Christians primarily in Europe but also in the United States and elsewhere. The report catalogs instances of discrimination including abrogation of freedom of conscience and expression and of the “collective dimension of freedom of religion,” as well as interference with employment, education, and the rights of parents. Intolerance, where Christians and expressions of Christianity are marginalized, is noted in defamation and insult, disrespectful works of art, repression or removal of religious symbols, and marginalization of ideas and individuals. Finally, an increasing number of hate crimes against Christians and church buildings, including desecration and vandalism, are noted. The report concludes with recommendations to state governments, to the European Union, to international governmental human rights institutions, and to OSCE/ODIHR and OSCE missions.