President Obama spoke this morning at the National Prayer Breakfast, vowing that his administration will "keep standing for religious freedom around the world."


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"Even as our faith sustains us, it's clear that around the world freedom of religion is under threat. ... We see governments engaging in discrimination and violence against the faith. We sometimes see religion twisted in an attempt to justify hatred. Persecution of other people just because of who they are," said Obama.

"The killing of the innocent is never fulfilling God's will. In fact, it's the ultimate betrayal of God's will."


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Obama called on North Korea to release Christian missionary Kenneth Bae and for Iran to free Christian pastor Saeed Abedini.

Bae, 45,  has been held for more than a year in North Korea. He was convicted of trying to overthrow the government and sentenced to 15 years of hard labor.

"We pray for pastor Saeed Abedini, who has been held in Iran for 18 months, sentenced to eight years in prison on charges relating to his Christian beliefs. As we continue to work for his freedom, today again we call on the Iranian government to release pastor Abedini so he can return to the loving arms of his wife and children in Idaho," said Obama.


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Watch the full remarks in the videos below.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3