For centuries, there were countless efforts to separate religious belief and practice from the responsibilities and work of states and governments.
Unfortunately, none of these attempts was conclusive and they have sometimes had negative repercussions, even in developed countries.
The international community still does not have clear and undisputed rules to identify the main uses of religion that violate basic justice, equality and human rights.
This initiative will fill that gap by focusing on securing international consensus on the core fundamental denominator that can essentially eradicate all abuses of religion without confrontation.
To be most effective and make the biggest possible impact, it will avoid being dragged into side issues that could make it irrelevant.
Such an effort will be the indispensable starting point to refute any claim by extremists that they are defending their religion. This would remove a key recruitment technique by which the naïve and vulnerable are attracted to terrorism.
BPUR’s mission is to draft, publish and seek governmental signatories to an International Treaty to Ban the Political Use of Religion, along the lines of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty that came into force in 1970.
The initiative has received overwhelming support and is continuing to build more by selecting and inviting a broad range of global influential figures from the spheres of religion, politics, business and the arts to steer, support and promote this global campaign.
It will lead an extensive process to access all necessary legal expertise and legislative feedback to draw up a treaty that will address the root causes of the worst conflicts and breaches of human rights in the world.
We are aiming for a treaty that would set out a clear framework for what constitutes the many and varied abuses of religion in politics. This would represent a step towards greater respect for human rights by liberating those who suffer from religious repression, which is itself a major human rights abuse.
The treaty will emphasize the utmost respect for all religions and encourage greater transparency in politics. This will undermine common allegations by extremists that there is an agenda against a certain religion, a tool regularly used to recruit the frustrated and disenfranchised to terrorism.
Obviously, all responsible governments that value equal citizenship will endorse it straight away, and that will make it an official UN treaty. This would tip the balance in favor of more moderate, tolerant ideals and would be a step towards bringing outlier states to the majority world consensus, as happened after the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948.
We believe that there are very few countries that would hesitate to endorse such a treaty, including those that consistently deny using religion as a political tool.
If we are careful, focused and not drawn into contentious issues, many of the countries and parties implicated will seize the opportunity to clean up their acts, stop using religion for political gains and join the world consensus on justice and equality for all people.
We are planning to establish ourselves as the global ‘go-to’ body for raising awareness of the abuse of religion in politics. This would be achieved in part by establishing a monitoring service that could provide media organisations and other interested parties with credible, trustworthy statistics and facts about such abuses.
The NGO will provide real-time, constantly updated and verified data that will help empower governments, organisations and individuals to apply diplomatic and political pressure to those who continue to commit such abuses.
If you have the energy and time to support and push this initiative further, please contact us.