Serap Güler
Photo © laurencechaperon

“In the Federal Republic of Germany, being allowed to practice one’s religion freely is a fundamental human right. At the same time, no one may be forced by the state or third parties to join a particular religious community or make a profession of faith. Faith is something very personal and individual and must not be imposed. Through practical but also political work, Atheist Refugee Relief (Säkulare Flüchtlingshilfe e.V.) helps those people who have decided against their religion and are still exposed to prejudice and persecution outside their countries of origin.”

State Secretary for Integration Serap Güler
Ministry for Children, Family, Refugees and Integration of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia

Doris Schröder-Köpf
Foto AG Gymnasium Melle
(CC-BY-SA 3.0)

“The freedom of faith and conscience and the freedom of religious and ideological confession are inviolable – so it says in the German Basic Law. Everyone can believe what they want to believe – and indeed not believe. This fundamental right is not guaranteed in every country of the world. Atheism is even punishable in some countries and is punishable by death. Precisely because of these repressions, the help for religiously free fugitives is an important support. Atheist Refugee Relief (Säkulare Flüchtlingshilfe e.V.) stands up for people who are threatened because of their personal convictions and supports them in their search for a life in freedom. Many thanks for their important contribution to the protection of human rights, which was made possible not least by the courageous efforts of Rana Ahmad.”

Doris Schröder-Köpf
State Commissioner for Migration and Participation of the State of Lower Saxony

Bärbel Kofler
Foto © photothek/Thomas Köhler

“The right to freedom of religion or belief of every person, in all its diversity, must be respected. This includes the freedom not to practice any religion. This is a central element of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It is important to me that people who have been persecuted in their home country on account of their political or religious convictions and who are accepted in Germany can practice their religion and philosophy freely and in peace with us. Refugees, who have often suffered from collective manifestations of religious hatred in their home countries, should be able to enjoy these freedoms guaranteed by the German Constitution in a climate of open and honest discussion in a society open to the world.”

Bärbel Kofler
Representative of the Federal Government for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid at the Federal Foreign Office

Dr. Michael Blume
Photo © Loges + Langen

“True religious freedom means freedom of religion, but also freedom from religion. Therefore, I thank the Atheist Refugee Relief (Säkulare Flüchtlingshilfe e.V.) for their valuable support for discriminated and persecuted exiles of faith. With the secular refugee assistance I speak out for a stronger recognition not only of religious conversions, but also of the dangers of religious non-belief in European asylum procedures.”

Dr. Michael Blume
Representative of the State Government of Baden-Württemberg against Anti-Semitism in the Ministry of State

Günter Wallraff
Günter Wallraff
Foto @ privat

“The Atheist Refugee Relief (Säkulare Flüchtlingshilfe e.V.) provides important assistance to refugees, especially those who are persecuted twice. When people have to flee their homeland from repression, many can only cast off their state-ordered beliefs in Germany. Often, however, they are still exposed to exclusion, contempt and threats from religious fanatics. These people then need special help: a protective community with tolerance between cultures, religious or non-religious world views. With its commitment, the Atheist Refugee Relief strengthens this foundation of an enlightened humanism.
Especially as a profoundly believing agnostic I stand in solidarity with the Atheist Refugee Relief!”

Günter Wallraff
Journalist and author

Kai Klose
Foto © HMSI

“The separation of state and religion is a foundation of our modern pluralistic constitutional state. This includes freedom of religion. It includes freedom of religion as well as freedom from religion. This positive and negative freedom of religion as well as conversion are important cornerstones of German integration policy. In a society characterized by diversity and openness, these rights must be lived, but also protected and guaranteed. In this context, the Atheist Refugee Relief (Säkulare Flüchtlingshilfe e.V.) promotes democracy in the best sense. For this I thank and wish the association a successful future.”

Minister of State Kai Klose
Ministry for Social Affairs and Integration of Hessen