Join International Front against Religious-Right and for Secularism
This petition had 1,172 supporters
Our era is marked by the rise of the religious-Right – not because of a “religious revival” but rather due to the rise of far-Right political movements and states using religion for political supremacy. This rise is a direct consequence of neo-conservatism and neo-liberalism and the social policies of communalism and cultural relativism. Universalism, secularism and citizenship rights have been abandoned and segregation of societies and “communities” based on ethnicity, religion and culture have become the norm.
The Islamic State (formerly ISIS), the Saudi regime, Hindutva (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) in India, the Christian-Right in the US and Europe, Bodu Bala Sena in Sri Lanka, Haredim in Israel, AQMI and MUJAO in Mali, Boko Haram in Nigeria, the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan to the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Islamic Salvation Front in Algeria are examples of this.
For many decades now, people in the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and the Diaspora have been the first victims but also on the frontlines of resistance against the religious-Right (whether religious states, organisations and movements) and in defence of secularism and universal rights, often at great risk to their lives.
We call on people everywhere to stand with us to establish an international front against the religious-Right and for secularism. We demand:
1. Complete separation of religion from the state. Secularism is a fundamental right.
2. Separation of religion from public policy, including the educational system, health care and scientific research.
3. Abolition of religious laws in the family, civil and criminal codes. An end to discrimination against and persecution of LGBT, religious minorities, women, freethinkers, ex-Muslims, and others.
4. Freedom of religion and atheism and freedom to criticise religions. Belief as a private affair.
5. Equality between women and men and citizenship rights for all.
Adopted at the 11-12 October 2014 International Conference on the Religious-Right, Secularism and Civil Rights in London.
AC Grayling, Philosopher
Aliyah Saleem, Secular Education Campaigner
Amel Grami, Professor at the Tunisian University of Manouba
Bahram Soroush, Social and Political Analyst
Ben Baz Aziz is a Presenter at Arab Atheist broadcasting
Caroline Fourest, French Writer and Editor
Chris Moos, LSESU Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society
Chulani Kodikara, International Centre for Ethnic Studies, Sri Lanka
Daphna Baram, Israeli-born human rights lawyer, journalist and comedian
Elham Manea, Yemeni Writer and Human Rights Activist
Faizun Zackariya, Citizens for Justice, Sri Lanka
Fariborz Pooya, Host of Bread and Roses TV
Fatou Sow, International Director of Women Living Under Muslim Laws
Gita Sahgal, Director of Centre for Secular Space
Hamid Taqvaee, Secretary of the Central Committee of the Worker-Communist Party of Iran
Horia Mosadiq, Human Rights and Women’s Rights Activist from Afghanistan
Imad Iddine Habib, Founder of Council of Ex-Muslims of Morocco
Inna Shevchenko, Leader of FEMEN
Julie Bindel, Emma Humphreys Memorial Prize and Justice for Women
Kacem El Ghazzali, Moroccan secularist writer and blogger
Kate Smurthwaite, Comedian and Activist
Kiran Opal, Writer, LGBTQ/Human Rights Campaigner, Co-founder Ex-Muslims of North America
Lila Ghobady, Iranian writer-journalist and documentary filmmaker
Magdulien Abaida, Libyan Activist and President of Hakki (My Right) Organization for Women Rights
Marieme Helie Lucas, Algerian Founder of Secularism is a Woman’s Issue
Maryam Namazie, Iranian Spokesperson for One Law for All, Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain and Fitnah
Nadia El Fani, Tunisian Filmmaker
Nahla Mahmoud, Spokesperson of Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
Nina Sankari, Vice-President of the Atheist Coalition, Poland
Nira Yuval-Davis, a founder member of Women Against Fundamentalism and the International Research Network on Women in Militarized Conflict Zone
Pervez Hoodbhoy, Pakistani Nuclear Physicist and Social Activist
Peter Tatchell, Director of Peter Tatchell Foundation
Pragna Patel, Director of Southall Black Sisters
Ramin Forghani, Founder of Ex-Muslims of Scotland
Rumy Hassan, Senior Lecturer at University of Sussex and author
Sameena Zehra, comedian and blues singer
Sanal Edamaruku, President of Rationalist International
Soad Baba Aissa, Founder of the Association for Mixing, Equality and Secularism
Sue Cox, Founder of Survivors Voice Europe
Sultana Kamal is a lawyer, human rights activist and Executive Director of Ain o Salish Kendra in Bangladesh
Terry Sanderson, President of the National Secular Society
Yasmin Rehman, Women’s Rights Activist
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