(RNS) Iran’s Charter of Citizens’ Rights could worsen religious freedom in the country

Aside from President Rouhani’s occasional tweets wishing Jews and Christians well on Rosh Hashanah and Christmas, Iran’s track record on religious tolerance and freedom is dismal.

Last month, the president released a draft Charter of Citizens’ Rights. Nice title, but what’s inside leaves much to be desired according to Nazila Ghanea, who teaches international human rights law at the University of Oxford. Ghanea has studied Iran’s human rights record for nearly two decades with a particular focus on freedom of religion or belief and minority rights. I spoke with her about this new charter and more generally about religious freedom in Iran. This interview was edited for length and clarity.

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