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of Religious Freedom
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Let's End "Witchhunt" Persecution in Uganda
Of course, there are no such things as witches or witchcraft. However, "Witchhunts" are regularly conducted by self-anointed Christian Evangelical "Healers" for their own gain and fame throughout Africa, with tragic and often fatal results for the victims who are usually the most vulnerable in the community.
AAI, along with our Ugandan affiliate, the Humanist Association for Leadership, Equity and Accountability (HALEA), is campaigning to have the government confront this problem and prosecute those who conduct and perpetuate it through our "Stand Up For Reason" Campaign.
Donate here and help us to end this inhuman tragedy!
Find out more about this atrocious practice and our campaign to eradicate it.
AAI Affiliate Convention
Comedia Theater, Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
May 22-24, 2015
Carsten Frerk, author
Annie Laurie Gaylor, Founder and Co-President of the Freedom from Religion Foundation
Dan Barker, former evangelical preacher, author and FFRF Co-President
Michael Schmidt-Salomon, Executive Spokesman of the Giordano Bruno Foundation
Michael Nugent, chair of Atheist Ireland
Leo Igwe, human rights campaigner
Claude Singer, Fédération Nationale de la Libre Pensée
On Saturday, May 23 the IBKA award 'Sapio' will be given to singer, songwriter, and evolution biologist Greg Graffin.
AAI Affiliate Conference
Hosted by the Philippine Atheists and Agnostics Society (PATAS)
May 31, 2015, Sunday
Unilab Bayanihan Center
8008 Pioneer street, Kapitolyo, Pasig City, Philippines
- Click on the above image for more information! -
TIME TO BRING AN END TO BLASPHEMY LAWS!
Atheist Alliance International is proud to be a transnational partner in the newly-launched International Coalition Against Blasphemy Laws.
By going to the ICABL website you can find news on victims of Blasphemy laws from all around the world, including an interactive map with detailed information on the countries’ blasphemy laws and consequences.
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Created on Tuesday, 10 March 2015 11:10
According to Radio Free Europe, a Pakistani court has upheld the death sentence for the killer of a politician who sought blasphemy law reform, but dropped a terrorism conviction, making it unlikely he will be executed soon.
The Islamabad High Court dismissed an appeal against the death sentence by Mumtaz Qadri, a former bodyguard who fatally shot Punjab governor Salman Taseer in Islamabad in January 2011.
Qadri admitted shooting Taseer, saying he objected to the politician's calls to reform Pakistan's strict blasphemy laws, which can carry the death penalty.
Created on Friday, 06 March 2015 09:32
It took less than a year for a Turkish court to block the website of the country’s first official atheism association.
According to News.AZ, the Atheism Association, the first of its kind in any Muslim-majority country, was officially founded in Istanbul’s Asian-side neighborhood of Kadıköy in April 2014, Hurriyet Daily reports. However, the Gölbaşı 2nd Civil Court of Peace in Ankara has finally moved to block the association’s website, according to the group’s statement on March 3, 2015.
As of March 4, Turkish internet users could not access www.ateizmdernegi.org without using tools to bypass blockings, such as a VPN.
The court ruling cites Article 216 of the Turkish Penal Law, which forbids “provoking the people for hate and enmity or degrading them.”
Created on Wednesday, 04 March 2015 16:49
What's the future of religious institutions in the U.S.? Answer: None.
By Lynn Stuart Parramore / AlterNet
According to AlterNet, with fire-breathing religion figuring anew in global conflicts, and political discussions at home often dominated by the nuttery of the Christian right, you might get the sense that somebody’s god is ready to mug you around every street corner. But if you’re the type who doesn’t like to hang your hat on organized religion, here’s a bit of good news: in America, your numbers are growing.
There are more religiously unaffiliated people in the U.S. today than ever before. Starting in the 1980s, a variety of polls using different methodologies have come to the same conclusion: people who do not identify with religious labels are on the rise, perhaps even doubling in that time frame.
Some call them “nones”: agnostics, atheists, deists, secular humanists, general humanists, and people who just don’t care to identify with any religious group. It’s not exactly correct to call them nonbelievers, because some still have faith and spirituality in some sense or another. A 2012 Pew study noted that 30 percent of these people believe in "God or universal spirit" and around 20 percent even pray every day. But according to the latest research, Americans checking the “none of the above” box will make up an increasingly important force in the country. Other groups, like born-again evangelicals, have grown more percentage-wise, but the nones have them beat in absolute numbers.
Created on Tuesday, 24 February 2015 17:02
We are proud to announce that our president, Christine M. Shellska, has given a speech at the UN's Commission for Social Development. Prepared and researched by Rustam Singh, the speech brilliantly and succinctly details AAI's vision and goals for the future. The text of the speech, as well as a link to the video of Ms. Shellska presenting the speech, is provided below.
Transcript of AAI’s oral statement presented at the Commission for Social Development, Fifty-third Session, 9th meeting, UN Headquarters, New York (Tuesday, February 10, 2015)
Researched/prepared by: Mr. Rustam Singh, AAI UN Special Consultative Status Project Lead
Delivered by: Christine M. Shellska, President, AAI
Thank you, Madam Chair, for the opportunity to speak, and to the committee for your commendable work and your commitment to sustainable social development.
Atheist Alliance International’s vision is of a secular world, where public policy, scientific inquiry and education are not influenced by religious beliefs, but based upon sound reasoning, rationality and evidence.
Created on Wednesday, 18 February 2015 18:27
Suez Canal University President personally filed legal case against student Sherif Gaber, who claims he was tortured in custody
According to Daily News Egypt, A student from Ismailia was given a one year prison sentence by a court Monday for contempt of religion relating to activities on campus and atheist statements online.
Sherif Gaber, 22, was studying at Suez Canal University in 2013, when teaching staff and fellow students reported him via a petition to the institution’s President. They said he had made posts supporting atheism on Facebook, and suspected him of being behind a page called ‘The Atheists’.
Subsequently, the university’s then-president Mohamed A. Mohamedein personally filed a legal complaint against the student to the local prosecution on the grounds of contempt of religion. Monday’s verdict on the case allows Gaber to avoid the prison sentence on a bail of EGP 1,000. However, a retrial that could increase the sentence to over two years is due to take place in the coming weeks.
Created on Wednesday, 18 February 2015 18:02
According to Huffington Post, the ruling Islamic-rooted Justice and Development Party insists it is simply heeding the demands of a conservative and pious majority. It says the education measures aim to undo restrictions on religious education that were imposed following Turkey's so-called "soft military coup" of 1997, when the then-powerful military -- which saw itself as the guardian of Ataturk's secular principles -- pressured an Islamic-led government out of power and moved to close down vocational religious middle schools.
Created on Friday, 13 February 2015 16:32
According to RTE, atheist parents in Ireland are being obliged to send their children to Catholic and other religious-run schools where they are being evangelised, according to Atheist Ireland.
The group is due to meet Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Minister for Education Jan O'Sullivan later today to discuss the issue.
Atheist Ireland says census figures show that people of no religion comprise the second-largest group in the country after Catholics.
Created on Tuesday, 24 February 2015 16:41
WRITTEN BY CLAUDE SINGER, AAI NEWS TEAM
Please, be very careful with the meaning of the word “communautés” on either side of the Atlantic. There is a lot of confusion and misunderstanding on this issue in the media.
In France, the word « communautés » always refers to « religious communities », notably the French people of North-African origin – indeed, they are French citizens! The meaning of the word « community » in the USA is quite different. In addition, « black communities » in the USA are quite different from the many Muslim communities in France. To add confusion, the French Prime Minister has recently used the word « apartheid » concerning deprived neighborhoods during a press conference (!!!) and Fox-News has recently aired a report on « no-go areas » in Paris, which is absolutely stupid and confusing.
In France, Free Thought is not an atheist organization – even if a large number of our membership does not believe in the existence of a transcendent entity. We are a social and philosophical association advocating complete freedom of conscience and free inquiry (therefore we reject imposed dogmas and beliefs). We are one of the oldest associations in France (the first Free Thinkers groups date back to the 1840s); Free Thinkers were the initiators and main promoters of the Separation Law of 1905 in France; and some of our more prominent figures were people such as Victor Hugo (who was a deist) and Ferdinand Buisson (who was a liberal protestant). We do not require our members to declare whether or not they believe in a transcendent entity. This is a private matter. One can join Free Thought by making a commitment to respect the association’s statutes, which includes the commitment to not force themselves, others or their children to engage in or perform any religious ceremony. We clearly understand that this issue may be different on the other side of the Atlantic. But we have always agreed notably with Atheist Alliance on the issue of complete separation of religion and state.
Created on Wednesday, 18 February 2015 18:20
As ISIS makes inroads into Libya, officials in Rome are panicking about an Islamic State just across the sea—but have no idea how to combat the crisis.
According to Daily Beast, last weekend in Italy, as the threat of ISIS in Libya hit home with a new video addressed to “the nation signed with the blood of the cross” and the warning, “we are south of Rome,” Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi shuttered the Italian embassy in Tripoli and raised his fist with the threat of impending military action.
Never mind that Italy has only 5,000 troops available that are even close to deployable, according to the defense ministry. Or that the military budget was cut by 40 percent two years ago, which has kept the acquisition of 90 F-35 fighter jets hanging in the balance and left the country combat-challenged to lead any mission—especially one against an enemy like the Islamic State.
Created on Sunday, 15 February 2015 14:31
According to BBC, Police in Copenhagen say they have shot dead a man they believe was behind two deadly attacks in the Danish capital hours earlier.
Police say they killed the man in the Norrebro district after he opened fire on them.
It came after one person was killed and three police officers injured at a free speech debate in a cafe on Saturday.
In the second attack, a Jewish man was killed and two police officers wounded near the city's main synagogue.
Created on Friday, 13 February 2015 16:24
According to Press TV, Pope Francis has lashed out at those in the Western societies who keep justifying their insults against religions by resorting to notions such as freedom of expression.
In a Thursday meeting with Iran’s Vice President for Women and Family Affairs Shahindokht Molaverdi at the Vatican, the Pope stressed that freedom of expression does not mean insulting religions and religious sanctities.
The spiritual leader of the world’s Catholics has repeatedly expressed discontent with the growing trend of religious desecration in the West, which gained a new momentum in the wake of deadly terrorist attacks in France in early January.