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Murders, beatings, destruction - over 100 acts of hatred against Christians in Poland in 2021

Published: 29.04.2022

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· The number of acts of hatred against Christians in Poland continues to increase.

 

· The Ordo Iuris Institute once again submitted a report to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe showing the scale of sectarian aggression against Christians.

 

· In 2022, 112 such cases were recorded in Poland.

 

· The report describes, inter alia, 8 physical attacks on clergy, 2 of which resulted in death. There have also been cases of devastation of places of worship or disturbance of services.

 

DOWNLOAD THE REPORT

 

- The data provided annually by the Ordo Iuris Institute to the OSCE is becoming more and more disturbing every year. It is alarming that not only the number of hate crimes against Christians is increasing, but also a significant increase in the level of their brutality. There are more and more physical attacks on clergy, which even result in the death of the victim - emphasizes attorney Magdalena Majkowska from the Ordo Iuris Management Board.

 

The monitoring program covers crimes that have been reported in local or national media. Last year, a significant increase in the acts of hatred against Christians in Poland was noticeable in relation to the previous years. The number of such events described in the report has more than doubled compared to the previous year. The list includes cases of crimes from all over Poland. Most of the events described in the report are cases of vandalism, destruction of places and objects of religious worship - churches, roadside shrines, religious figures, monuments to saints and cemeteries. Moreover, not only is the number of hate crimes against Christians increasing, but at the same time these attacks are becoming more violent. Last year, the Ordo Iuris Center for Religious Freedom recorded 8 physical attacks against clergy, two of which were killed.

 

Among the events recorded by the Center for Religious Freedom Ordo Iuris in the annual report on manifestations of hatred against Christians in Poland, there were, among others, disrupting the Holy Mass in St. Mary's Basilica in Kraków by a woman who undressed during the liturgy and spat on a priest, destruction of over 25 graves, including children's graves, at the Łęczna cemetery, insulting the image of Our Lady of Częstochowa during a demonstration by left-wing activists in Toruń, destruction of the facade of the church building and the cross in Stary Wołów, the destruction of the historic statue of Our Lady in Koszalin, which was brought from Dachau by a former concentration camp prisoner, and an attack by an attacker using a gas gun on a priest celebrating Holy Mass in Duszniki-Zdrój.

 

. It is important to sensitize the public on this topic so that all manifestations of aggression motivated by religious hatred are reported. A strong response from law enforcement is also necessary. We can see that the social consent to insulting believers, in particular the indulgent treatment of such behavior on the part of celebrities, combined with the passivity of the justice system, takes an increasingly tragic toll - adds Magdalena Majkowska.

 

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe has for several years been conducting research and analysis on the scale of the phenomenon of hatred against various social groups. Ordo Iuris lawyers have been involved in this process since 2015 by monitoring violations of religious freedom and acts of religious aggression against Christians in Poland. To this end, the Institute established in 2018 the Ordo Iuris Religious Freedom Center, which deals with the collection of cases of violations of religious freedom, insults, harassment, vandalism or other destruction of places or religious symbols, and taking legal interventions to protect the rights of persons. believers in cases where their freedom to profess their religion and to manifest their religion through prayer, participation in religious rites, practicing or teaching are violated. The Ordo Iuris Institute also provides legal assistance to victims of sectarian hate crimes.

 

The OSCE report is published every year in mid-November. It collects information on hate crimes. It includes, among others acts such as threats, inflicting material damage on property, assaults, murder or any other crime, the commission of which is motivated by hatred or prejudice. In addition, it is a precondition that the act in question must be prohibited by law and constitutes a criminal offense under the national law of the country concerned.

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