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ICC Note:

The following story illustrates the fact that Christian persecution is still an issue in some European countries where Communism held power.

Christian Today (12/20/05) – The Presidium of the Conference of European Churches (CEC) has voiced its concerns over religious freedom in Albania following a meeting in Geneva last week.

The 10-member Presidium, which serves as the executive of the Central Committee of the CEC, reviewed the work of CEC and its commissions in the areas of religious freedom and human rights, with particular reference to the situation in Albania , as well as the issue of migration in Europe .

In a statement on religious freedom in Albania , CEC said: “CEC monitors very closely the implementation of human rights throughout Europe , including the right to religious freedom.”

CEC said that in several European countries, including Albania , Serbia-Montenegro and Turkey , “the issue of the restitution of formerly confiscated church property and the re-opening of places of worship and religious education remains a special concern”.

The statement continued: “It is therefore with serious concern that the CEC Presidium has learnt of specific local incidents in Albania , for example, in Permet, Lukovo, Libochovo and Kodra etc., where the return of places of worship has been prevented or revoked by local authorities.”

CEC called on the relevant governments, including the Albanian authorities, to “rigorously uphold” human and religious rights and to “make every effort to enable the return of places of worship held as sacred by the faithful of the community and which were confiscated during the communist period”…[Go To Full Story]