Why religious freedom matters for asylum seekers and refugees


  • Kareem P. A. McDonald


forced migration, refugees, asylum seekers, human rights, religious freedom


This article advances a three-pronged argument to demonstrate why religious freedom matters for asylum seekers and refugees. First, it is a fundamental human right owed to everyone. Second, the global crisis of religious freedom, marked by increasing persecution and government restrictions on religion around the world, has a particularly damaging impact on asylum seekers and refugees. Third, higher levels of religiosity tend to be found among asylum seekers. For these reasons, religion should hold a greater place in policies governing the reception of asylum seekers and refugees.

Author Biography

Kareem P. A. McDonald

Kareem P. A. McDonald is a PhD Fellow at the Human Rights Centre, University of Padova, Italy. His research interests focus on the relationship between religion, religious freedom, and migration.