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logoLaw and Religion Headlines International – Europe – United States

January 08, 2015

The opinions expressed or biases reflected in the headlines in this digest do not necessarily represent opinions or attitudes of those who maintain this headline news service. We strive for balance in presenting issues of potential interest to our readers.

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International Headlines

CALL FOR PAPERS: "Religious Freedom and Religious Pluralism in Africa: Prospects and Limitations" (Nico Horn and Pieter Coertzen, The African Consortium for Law and Religion Studies)

International Moot Court Competition 2015 – Law & Religion: Venice. March 2015 (Fondazione Studium Generale Marcianum)

Abu Zayd: face terrorism with thinking, not fragility, in religious discourse (Jennifer Bryson, Arc of the Universe: Ethics and Global Justice (Daniel Philpott))

Jamaat Ansar al-Islam in Syria Joins The Islamic State? (Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi, Syria Comment – Joshua Landis)

2014: A year of rising hostility toward Christians ((with interactive map), World Watch Monitor)

Education in Pakistan: building more schools to combat extremism (Madiha Qureshi, The Guardian)

Reforming Islam: Where change comes from (B.C., The Economist [Erasmus: Religion and public policy])

Egypt: President Sisi sets a historic milestone (Barbara Baker, World Watch Monitor)

From Egypt's leader, an ambitious call for reform in Islam (Sarah El Deeb and Lee Keath, The Associated Press)

Islam reformer being ignored (Jonah Goldberg, USA Today)

Foreign money being spent on religious conversions is an open secret: Venkaiah Naidu (Avinash Nair, The Indian Express)

Sufi scholars combat extremism (Hassan Benmehdi, Magharebia)

Bank of China, SARA release notice further clarifying the accounting of individual accounts of religious venues and schools [Simplified Chinese]

Shanxi [China] strictly forbids private meetings in Mosques, other religious venues [Simplified Chinese] (China News)

ISIS praises attack on Charlie Hebdo (The Nation)

Blasphemy accused killed after release [Pakistan] (

Pope John Paul II address to Chinese Catholic people in Asia (Inquirer)

Christmas decorations banned in Brunei in Shariah law crackdown (Kyodo in Bandar Seri Begawan,South China Morning Post)

The worst religious violence is a family affair (Philip Jenkins, Aleteia)

U.N.: Palestinian authority will join ICC April 1 – But seeking war crimes charges against Israel risks US aid to Palestinians (Stephanie Butnick, Tablet: A New Read on Jewish Life)

Conversion to Islam raises questions about patriotism: VHP (Aniruddha Ghosal , Divya Goyal, The Indian Express)

Libya: The next failed state (The Economist)

Vietnam abolishes fines for performing same-sex marriages, taking lead in gay rights (John Boudreau and Nguyen Dieu Tu Uyen, Bloomberg News)

Sri Lanka: Heading towards a constitutional despotism (Ramu Manivannan, South Asia Analysis Group)

Nepal to issue passports with third gender for sexual minorities (Gopal Sharma, Reuters)

Christian man detained on "security grounds" even though he did not commit any crimes(Nirmala Carvalho,

From Erbil to Dohuk, Iraqi Kurdistan between autonomist ambitions and Islamist dangers (Dario Salvi,

UN rights chief warns against backlash after Paris attacks (The Local [Switzerland])

North Korea: Nothing to celebrate on leader's birthday, says HRW (Eurasia Review)

Iraqi Christians say there's no going home after rise of Islamic State (Kevin J. Jones, Catholic News Agency)

Myanmar's first cardinal calls for meeting of country's religious leaders (Radio Free Asia)

‘Christmas Day reconversion an attempt to insult minorities’ (The New Indian Express)

Empty cathedrals and the myth of religious decline (Trevin Wax, The Gospel Coalition)

Why don’t more moderate Muslims denounce extremism? They do; we're just not listening.(Marc Schneier, The Washington Post)

What Chabad needs to do now (Dennis Prager, Jewish Journal)

See for additional articles and an archive of past headlines.

Europe Headlines

EVENT, 15 January 2015: Religious Liberty in the UK and European Union (Professor Mark Hill QC, The University of Notre Dame Australia School of Law)

Paris Jewish institutions at maximum alert following Charlie Hebdo attack (JTA)

France and the new charismatic jihad (Reuel Marc Gerecht, The Wall Street Journal Opinion)

France: An attack on free expression (Human Rights Watch)

‘Dangerous moment’ for Europe, as fear and resentment grow (Steven Erlanger and Katrin Bennhold,The New York Times)

We are Charlie: Free speech v. self-censorship (Douglas Murray, Gatestone Institute)

Proud to offend, Charlie Hebdo carries torch of political provocation (Doreen Carvajal and Suzanne Daley, The New York Times)

France mosques targetted after mag killings (Arab News)

Inside the new anti-Muslim group gaining strength in Germany (Lucian Kim, Buzzfeed)

57 percent of Germans feel Islam is a threat: poll (The Local [Germany])

On ‘Islamization’ of Germany (Adbulrahman al-Rashed, Arab News)

Belgian bishop says Catholic Church should bless same-sex couples (David Gibson, Religion News Service)

EU in deep trouble with top court (

Wi-Fi in churches – health effects, courts’ jurisdiction and locus standi (David Pocklington, Law & Religion UK)

Turkey's Constitutional Court must remain free, Council of Europe’s Jagland says (Ipek Yezdani,Hurriyet Daily News)

Channel Islands and Winchester diocese split details released (BBC News Jersey)

Fr Samir: There is a war within Islam and Western politicians do not defend European culture(Samir Khalil Samir,

Two suspected Syria jihadists go on trial in Berlin (Alexandra Hudson, Reuters)

Even football coaches have their hopes in God, why don't jihadists? (Özgür Korkmaz, Hürriyet Daily News)

The preservation of the patrimony and of the symbol of the Bucharest Roman-Catholic Church before the ECHR: Catholic Diocese of Bucharest v. Romania case (European Centre for Law and Justice)

European rights court mulls ruling on patient ‘s life (AFP, The Nation)

France’s multiculturalist agenda makes Jews pack their bags (Ryan Girdusky, The Daily Caller Opinion)

Right to die: Europe’s rights court mulls if French quadriplegic can die (Cedric Simon,

Italy court recognizes child born to gay couple for first time (Reuters)

Islamist terror in Paris (The Wall Street Journal Opinion)

Erdogan grooms a new jihad generation (Abigail R. Esman, Investigative Project on Terrorism, Breitbart News)

Germany turns off the lights to protest growing anti-Islam movement (Krishnadev Calamur, NPR)

Lamps go out all over Germany in backlash against anti-immigrant protests (Justin Huggler,Telegraph)

Religion and Law round-up – 4th January (Frank Cranmer, Law & Religion UK)

France and terrorism: Fertile ground (The Economist)

See for additional articles and an archive of past headlines.

United States Headlines

EVENT, 29 January 2015: Can we end poverty? (Cato Institute, Columbia University)

EEOC rules for NJ teacher fired for giving a Bible to a student (Don Byrd, Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty)

Atheist parents take on Christian ‘Good News Club’ with ‘Better News Club’ (Kimberly Winston,Religion News Service)

The Mario that might have been: The former governor of New York failed to use his impressive gifts as a politician to defend life (Robert P. George, MercatorNet)

New Religious Action Center leader aims to sharpen Reform Judaism’s stamp on policy(Michelle Boorstein, The Washington Post)

GOP leaders want to debate Religious Freedom Bill (Jim Shella, Wish TV)

$75K settlement in California religious discrimination case (Mejinderpal Kaur, Sikh 24)

Same-sex marriage showdown in the Fifth Circuit on Friday (Dale Carpenter, The Volokh Conspiracy)

Pope Francis causes division among Cubans in Miami (Alfredo Garcia, Religion & Politics)

Government shouldn't force religious schools to violate their beliefs (Ryan T. Anderson, The Daily Signal)

2nd Circuit rejects religious liberty challenge to school vaccination policy (Don Byrd, Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty)

Federal judge enters final ruling on Indiana abortion clinic law (Steven Wildberger, Jurist)

Court denies motions to dismiss suits in shop's refusal to sell flowers for same-sex wedding(Howard Friedman, Religion Clause)

Florida extends health and retirement benefits to same-sex spouses of state employees (Howard Friedman, Religion Clause)

City settles suit challenging Christian symbols at veterans' memorial (Howard Friedman, Religion Clause)

Hathout, Muslim interfaith icon, dies (Arab News)

Synagogue board improperly denied congregational vote on rabbi's retention (Howard Friedman,Religion Clause)

Leading into the 2016 presidential election battle, “religious liberty” has become code for a license to discriminate against the LGBTQ community (and women) (Marci A. Hamilton, Justia: Verdict)

Miami Archbishop says church employees could be fired for supporting gay marriage (Lucinda Borkett-Jones, Christian Today)

Miami archbishop warns employees against supporting gay marriage, even in a tweet (David Gibson, Religion News Service)

Appeals court upholds N.Y. school vaccination requirements (Mark Walsh, Education Week)

US military ordered not to use female guards to move 5 defendants in 9/11 case at Guantanamo(AP, Star Tribune)

Ruling against florist who didn't want to do gay wedding (AP, KOMO News)

Same-sex spouses of Florida state employees granted health insurance, retirement benefits(Steve Rothaus, Miami Herald)

United Methodists settle complaint against bishop over same-sex wedding (Sarah Pulliam Bailey,Religion News Service)

12-year-old told to stop reading his Bible in school (Christian Today)

Miami judge weds gays and lesbians after ruling against ban (Rick Neale, USA Today)

Mental care ordered for NC man ahead of terror support trial (Emery P. Dalesio, The Associated Press)

U.S. appeals court hears arguments on restrictive Texas abortion law (Jonathan Kaminsky, Reuters)

King settles: 3-2 vote for settlement on flag issue could save city $2 million (Nicholas Elmes, The Stokes News)

See for additional articles and an archive of past headlines