Religious Freedom in the Wake of the Arab Spring

Despite the solidarity Egyptians displayed in the Tahrir Square protests that sparked the Arab Spring, subsequent months witnessed a dangerous increase in violence against religious minorities, especially the Coptic Christian community. As Egypt, Tunisia, and now Libya sought to construct new democratic governments, their respective approaches to religion-state issues were critical to their success. Can these and other democratic aspirants in the region hope for stability without granting religious freedom to all their citizens? Or is the notion of religious freedom a Western concept, inapplicable to countries with different histories and cultures?

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