MEP Marlene Mizzi urged the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini to take stronger stand and condemn all forms of intolerance and violence against Christian people in the Middle East.

“I can’t believe that in today’s world, people’s human rights are violated because of their religion or belief. This is counter to the values that we in the European Union uphold. We must defend religious pluralism, tolerance and mutual understanding.” said Marlene Mizzi during her intervention in Strasbourg.

MEPs discussed this week in Strasbourg the situation of Christians in the Middle East with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini. The debate was in reaction to the recent bomb attacks on two Coptic churches holding Palm Sunday services in Egypt that killed at least 44 people and injured more than 100 others, according to reports.

MEP Mizzi said: “I am very concerned at the deterioration of the situation of Christians in the Middle East. Long-established Christian communities in the Middle East face increasing pressures which have resulted either in a significant displacement of people in some countries or a decline of Christians in the region as a whole.”

“The recent bombings in Egypt were only one of many and definitely not an isolated attack against Christians in that region. These attacks aimed at creating tension between religions, fuelling hatred and setting communities against each other,” Marlene Mizzi.

In her speech MEP Mizzi said that Christians have been targeted for their religion and beliefs for decades and it is time for the European Union to take firm actions and step up its efforts to promote religious freedom both here in Europe and everywhere in the world. She also called on Member States in the next Foreign Affairs Council to urgently address the situation of Christians in the Middle East.
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