U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton voiced strong opposition Monday to proposed U.N. resolutions on "defamation of religions," saying that such policies would restrict free speech.
In opening remarks for the release of the State Department's Annual Report on International Religious Freedom, Clinton said that while some claim so-called defamation of religions policies would help protect freedom of religion, she "strongly disagree[s]."
"The United States will always seek to counter negative stereotypes of individuals based on their religion and will stand against discrimination and persecution," Clinton stated. "But an individual's ability to practice his or her religion has no bearing on others' freedom of speech."
The protection of speech about religion and religious discourse is important in a world with many different faith beliefs, asserted the high-ranking U.S. diplomat.