Message from the Minister

John Baird Canada's Foreign Affairs Minister

I am very pleased to welcome you to the online home of Canada’s Office of Religious Freedom.

Opened on February 19, 2013, the Office has been created to promote freedom of religion or belief as a Canadian foreign policy priority. The Office will be an important vehicle through which Canada can advance fundamental Canadian values, including freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law worldwide. The Office will advance policies and programs that support, promote and defend the right to freedom of religion.

Canada is uniquely placed to protect and promote religious freedom worldwide. Ours is a pluralistic country of many cultural heritages and religions. But Canadians and people around the world share a common humanity. As such, it is our common duty to defend the rights of the afflicted and give voice to the voiceless.

I am confident the Office will help advance Canada’s principled foreign policy. It is an expression of our government’s commitment to protect and promote Canadian interests and values around the world.