Seminar at EU Parliament to focus on anti-Christian intolerance

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The European Community’s Catholic bishops have organized an Oct. 2 seminar at the European Parliament to discuss intolerance and discrimination against Christians living on the continent.

The Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Community, which helped organize the seminar, noted the “great success” of an Italian legal case that rejected an effort to ban the display of crucifixes in public school classrooms under the European Convention on Human Rights.

The bishops’ commission also said there have been positive changes like the establishment of new institutions opposed to anti-Christian discrimination.

The seminar on anti-Christian intolerance is in its second consecutive year. Its other organizers include the Group of European Conservatives and Reformists and the Group of the European People’s Party in the European Parliament.

Participants include representatives from the Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians in Europe, the European Centre for Law and Justice, and the Parliamentary Office of the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland. Legal experts from Lithuania, Spain and the Vatican will also speak.

Ministers of the European Parliament and other EU officials will contribute to the event.

The Austria-based Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians said it welcomed the seminar. Its latest report, released in March, found that 85 percent of hate crimes in Europe during 2011 were aimed at Christians.

The Oct. 2 seminar will begin at 9:30 in the morning at the EU Parliament in Brussels, Belgium. The event offers language interpretation in French, German, Spanish, English, Italian and Polish.

Registration for attendees is required and will be open until Sept. 26.

More information on the seminar is available through the European Community bishops’ commission website

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