U.S. Christian Leaders Call Morocco 'Island of Peace,' Highlight Morocco's Record of Religious Tolerance

Jun 17, 2010, 19:58 ET from Moroccan American Center for Policy

WASHINGTON, June 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, U.S. Christian leaders highlighted Morocco's long history of friendship and cooperation with the U.S., its deep respect for religious tolerance and "historic generosity toward foreign Christians." In a press conference at the National Press Club, the leaders, members of the National Clergy Council's (NCC) Executive Committee, also presented findings from their recent trip to Morocco, "Morocco Report: An Overview of Current Tensions Related to the Deportation of Christians from Morocco."

"In a world where religious, ethnic and political tensions are building to explosive levels, Morocco remains an island of peace," said the Reverend Rob Schenck, President of the NCC.

Schenck, joined by the Reverend Dr. Kenneth Barney and the Reverend Dr. Harry Thomas, shared their positive experiences in Morocco and the atmosphere of tolerance they personally witnessed during several visits to the North African country over the last six years.  The group stated that Christians are safe and welcome to practice their faith in Morocco, emphasizing that the NCC experienced no evidence of animosity towards foreign Christians and no forms of persecution.  In fact, the group called the dialogue with representatives from Morocco's religious and civic communities "meaningful" and "frank and unrestricted."

The NCC's Morocco Report: An Overview of Current Tensions Related to the Deportation of Christians from Morocco provides critical insight into the recent deportations following interviews and meetings with both Moroccan Authorities and the Christian Community in Morocco:

  • Morocco is unique in the Muslim world in its tolerance of and appreciation for other religious expressions.
  • The extraordinary cooperation of Morocco and the United States is invaluable to the international war against terrorism and extremism.
  • Morocco extended an open invitation to members of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission of the U.S. Congress to travel to Morocco to gather facts and discuss critical issues related to religious freedom. They are optimistic that a reasonable and mutually acceptable understanding will result from such a visit.

The Moroccan American Center for Policy (MACP) is a non-profit organization whose principal mission is to inform opinion makers, government officials, and interested publics in the United States about political and social developments in Morocco and the role being played by the Kingdom of Morocco in broader strategic developments in North Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East.  For more, please visit www.moroccanamericanpolicy.org.

This material is distributed by the Moroccan American Center for Policy on behalf of the Government of Morocco.  Additional information is available at the Department of Justice in Washington, DC.

SOURCE Moroccan American Center for Policy