Pew Research Center Says Global Restrictions on Religion Rose in 2015

The level of global restrictions on religion increased in 2015, according to a recent report from the Pew Research Center’s Religion & Public Life.

An analysis published Tuesday by Pew regarding their annual “Global Restrictions on Religion” report found that restrictions against religion increased modestly in 2015, reversing a two-year trend of decreased restriction.

“The share of countries with ‘high’ or ‘very high’ levels of government restrictions – i.e., laws, policies and actions that restrict religious beliefs and practices – ticked up from 24% in 2014 to 25% in 2015,” noted Pew.

“Meanwhile, the percentage of countries with high or very high levels of social hostilities – i.e., acts of religious hostility by private individuals, organizations or groups in society – increased in 2015, from 23% to 27%.”

Pew also noted that the 2015 rise in social hostility to religion stemmed from “a number of factors, including increases in mob violence related to religion, individuals being assaulted or displaced due to their faith, and incidents where violence was used to enforce religious norms.”

“In Europe, for instance, there were 17 countries where incidents of religion-related mob violence were reported in 2015, up from nine the previous year,” continued Pew.

Pew also noted that the 2015 rise in social hostility to religion stemmed from “a number of factors, including increases in mob violence related to religion, individuals being assaulted or displaced due to their faith, and incidents where violence was used to enforce religious norms.”

“In Europe, for instance, there were 17 countries where incidents of religion-related mob violence were reported in 2015, up from nine the previous year,” continued Pew.

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Source: Christian Post