We are committed to defending freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) for all, and to promoting respect between different religious and non-religious communities. Indeed, promoting the right to FoRB is one of the UK's longstanding human rights priorities. Nobody should live in fear because of their identity or beliefs. The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) monitors FoRB globally, and regularly raises concerns with national governments who are not meeting their obligations, publicly and in private, including at a ministerial level. The FCDO also works via multilateral fora, such as the UN, G7, OSCE, Council of Europe, and the International Religious Freedom or Belief Alliance to promote and protect FoRB for all. The UK will host an international ministerial conference on FoRB in July 2022 to energise collective efforts on this agenda.
In December 2020, the Prime Minister reaffirmed his commitment to FoRB by appointing Fiona Bruce MP as his Special Envoy for FoRB. Bruce works with ministers, officials, and others to deliver the Government's goal of seeing everyone, everywhere able to have and practise a faith, belief, or no religious belief, in accordance with their conscience. In January 2022, David Burrowes was appointed as her deputy. Most prominently, Ms Bruce is working with the Minister for Human Rights, Lord Ahmad, to drive forward the implementation of the recommendations from the Bishop of Truro's report on FCO support for persecuted Christians in a way that improves the lives of those persecuted for their faith, or belief, or for not holding a religion. I understand that the FCDO have achieved 16 of the recommendations, and are making good progress on the remaining six.
As you note, women are more likely than men to be victims of religious discrimination and persecution. I am assured that the UK's human rights policy work considers the intersectionality of human rights, including the importance of addressing the specific vulnerabilities experienced by women and girls from religious minority communities. More broadly, the UK is recognised as a global leader in tackling violence against women and girls (VAWG).