EMBARGOED UNTIL 10:45 A.M. ET JULY 10, 2019
Rallies Hosted by Save the Persecuted Christians and Nations in Action Will Highlight Religious Persecution on an Unprecedented, Genocidal Scale; Participants Will Urge Prominent Law Firm Squire Patton Boggs to Cease Representation of Countries That Engage in or Tolerate Such Crimes
WASHINGTON—Next week, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is convening the largest human rights event in State Department history—the Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom. While this cause is a priority for President Donald Trump’s administration, too many Americans are still unaware that, around the globe, hundreds of millions of people are being persecuted simply because of their faith. They are being tortured, enslaved, raped, crucified, driven from their homes and murdered in the most horrific ways imaginable. The majority of the persecuted are children, with girls and women being among those most violated.
Worse than the widespread ignorance of these widely documented crimes against humanity is the fact that some Americans are, as a practical matter, actually enabling them. In particular, U.S. businesses that make money representing the persecutors or otherwise advocating on their behalf are at serious risk of being seen as effectively complicit in the odious behavior of their clients.
An example of this phenomenon is the prominent law firm Squire Patton Boggs (SPB) which lobbies on behalf of the some of the world’s most aggressive persecutors of religious minorities: the People’s Republic of China, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Cameroon and the Palestinian Authority. In light of their deplorable records on human rights, it is a safe bet that these countries’ regimes will be widely condemned in the course of next week’s Ministerial. And those who strive to obscure or excuse them and their conduct deserve to be criticized as well.
On May 1, 45 groups and individuals appealed to Squire Patton Boggs to stop representing such countries, much as the firm did last December when it dropped another horrific state-sponsor of persecution, Sudan. To date, the signers have received no response from SPB.
Consequently, Save the Persecuted Christians (STPC, www.SavethePersecutedChristians.org) and Nations in Action are sponsoring on the eve of the Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom rallies at SPB offices across the country. The firms’ partners, employees and strategic advisors will receive a further, written appeal to disassociate themselves and the company from its persecuting clients.
“These rallies are intended respectfully to press Squire Patton Boggs to spare its personnel—including such prominent figures as former House Speaker John Boehner and former Senate Majority Leaders Tom Daschle and Trent Lott—the reputational damage that inevitably will mount as public awareness grows about the firm’s representation of governments that engage in or allow religious persecution,” said Frank Gaffney, President and CEO of Save the Persecuted Christians. “If, on the other hand, Squire Patton Boggs maintains these regimes as clients and continues working to prevent them from facing penalties for the systematic oppression of people of faith in their countries—for example, via cuts in foreign aid, reductions in military sales, diminished bilateral ties, etc.—the firm and those who work for it will rightly be implicated in such persecution.”
WHO: Save the Persecuted Christians and Nations in Action
WHAT: Religious Freedom Rally—Washington, D.C.
WHERE: 2550 M St. NW, Washington, D.C.
*Rallies of various sizes are also planned for Atlanta, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Phoenix, San Francisco, Tampa, Tysons (Va.) and West Palm Beach (Fla.)
WHEN: 11 a.m. ET Wednesday, July 10
WHY: To hold anti-religious persecutors and their enablers accountable
HOW: Rally In-Person. Learn the truth about the greatest humanitarian crisis of our time from religious freedom advocates and other people of conscience in Washington or one of the other Religious Freedom Rally sites. Bring a sign and take a stand to end worldwide religious persecution. RSVP by city here.
Rally Online. Create awareness on social media by sharing and re-tweeting posts using the hashtag #Free2Pray, and #SPB_global, as well as by calling into local talk radio shows, writing letters to the editor and contacting your elected representatives about the global persecution of 300 million Christians and many more in other faith communities worldwide. Sign up online here.
Learn more about the nationwide events at ReligiousFreedomRally.org, where religious persecution photos and news as well as downloadable resources for the rallies are available, or visit twitter.com/freedom_rally or facebook.com/religiousfreedomrally.
Speakers and leaders for the Washington rally include:
- Former Rep. Frank Wolf, member of Congress from 1981 through 2015 and the original sponsor of the International Religious Freedom Act
- Frank Gaffney, President and CEO of Save the Persecuted Christians and a former Assistant Secretary of Defense (acting) under President Ronald Reagan
- Faith McDonnell, Director of the Religious Freedom Programs, Institute on Religion and Democracy
- Salih Hudayar, Founder, East Turkistan National Awakening Movement
- Logan Carmichael, Director of Advocacy, China Aid
- Scott Morgan, President of Red Eagle Enterprises and Chairman of the International Religious Freedom Roundtable’s Africa Working Group
The mission of Save the Persecuted Christians is to save lives and save souls by holding the persecutors accountable for their crimes against humanity. To that end, it will disseminate actionable information about the magnitude of such crimes and bring to bear a movement of concerned Americans determined to hold persecutors accountable for such crimes and create real costs for perpetrating them against those who follow Jesus.
Because most of these crimes are not covered in the media, Save the Persecuted Christians developed a dedicated news aggregator—www.ChristianPersecutionNews.com—to capture current instances of persecution and to provide readers an easy way to share these heartbreaking stories with others.