International Religious Freedom: Toward a Model of Transatlantic Cooperation, Private Sessions

Several European countries, the EU, and Canada have recently addressed religious freedom in their foreign policies. Given that US policy is already shaped by the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) passed by Congress, the potential exists for transatlantic cooperation in promoting religious freedom. However, differences among Western democracies are significant. This dialogue—the first in a year-long series on IRFA policy—aimed to identify these differences and find ways to accommodate or overcome them in the urgent task of advancing international religious freedom.
The second day of the symposium featured private sessions and focused on the state of religious freedom outside of the West in areas including the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and Asia.

This event was hosted by the Religious Freedom Project and was the second in a series of transatlantic dialogues sponsored by the British Council. It was generously sponsored by: the Institute for Studies of Religion;
The Review of Faith & International Affairs; Institute on Culture, Religion & World Affairs; Center for Civil and Human Rights; University of Sussex; International Center for Law and Religion Studies; and Birks Forum on the World's Religions. The dialogue was also part of a semester-long exploration of the global future of governance, under the auspices of Georgetown University's Global Futures Initiative. Read more about the event and its sponsors here.

9:00-10:30 a.m. | The Broader Middle East and the Question of Violent Religious Extremism  
Timur Kuran, Duke University (moderator)
Chris Seiple, Institute for Global Engagement
Nabil Fayyad, Syrian Delegation for Constitutional Reform

Farahnaz Ispahani, Woodrow Wilson Center

10:30-10:45 a.m. |
 Coffee Break
  10:45-12:15 p.m. | India and the Far East  
Rebecca Shah, Religious Freedom Project (moderator)

Faizan Mustafa, NALSAR University of Law

Liu Peng, Pu Shi Institute for Social Sciences

Mun’im Sirry, University of Notre Dame

Fenggang Yang, Purdue University

12:15-1:00 p.m. | Lunch
  1:00-2:30 p.m. | Eastern Europe and Orthodoxy  
Chris Seiple, Institute for Global Engagement (moderator)

Karrie Koesel, University of Notre Dame

Chris Marsh, US Army School of Advanced Military Studies

Viktor Yelensky, Member of Parliament of Ukraine

2:30-2:45 p.m. |
Coffee Break

2:45-4:00 p.m. | Prospects for Transatlantic Cooperation: Policy Recommendations
Daniel Philpott, University of Notre Dame (moderator)

Cole Durham, International Center for Law and Religion Studies

Thomas Farr, Religious Freedom Project

Fabio Petito, University of Sussex
Knox Thames, US State Department Office of International Religious Freedom

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