Under legislation planned for early next year, same-sex marriage will be legalized in the U.K., with the Church of England and other religious institutions supposedly free to "opt out" of performing homosexual marriages.
The government of the United Kingdom is under fire from Christian organizations, churches, and activists for refusing to recognize the right of Christians to wear crucifixes and crosses at work — even in government-sector jobs — while Muslim women and Sikh men, for example, are guaranteed the right to wear their traditional religious attire regardless of their employers’ wishes. Critics have slammed this and other policies apparently aimed at silencing Christians or forcing them to act against their faith as discrimination, but U.K. officials are currently defending some of the schemes at the so-called “European Court of Human Rights.”
Former Russian Foreign Minister Igor S. Ivanov, now president of the Russian International Affairs Council, has joined his American counterparts at the Council on Foreign Relations in calling for political and economic "convergence" between Russia and the EU.
Laity within the Church of England shocked the rest of the denomination November 20 by rejecting a proposal that would have allowed women to serve as bishops in the UK's official denomination.