(World Watch Monitor) — Mexico has a “policy of denial” about the thousands of evangelical Christians forced out of their homes because of their beliefs, according to a Mexican human rights activist.
Pedro Faro Navarro, director of the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Human Rights Centre, accused the government of “making up the figures” of people forcibly displaced because they have left the “traditionalist” Church, which blends aspects of indigenous paganism and popular Catholicism.
He said that the scale of the problem is hard to gauge. “Unfortunately, there are no records that we can use to officially count the number of cases because the Mexican state has never recognized the problem of forced internal displacement,” he said.
According to the Mexican Commission for the Defence and Promotion of Human Rights, a non-governmental organisation, more than 287,000 cases of forced internal displacement took place in the last five years. But the UN-accredited National Human Rights Commission puts the figure at around 35,000.