London: A former Archbishop of Canterbury has claimed that Christians in Britain are being ``driven underground`` and ``vilified`` by the state simply for expressing their beliefs.
Lord George Carey accused British courts of treating traditional Christians like ``bigots`` and ``persecuting`` them in the same way that homosexuals once were.
He also appealed to the European Court of Human Rights for protecting the religious rights of Christians, The Telegraph reports.
In a written submission, the former leader of over 70 million Anglicans warned that the outward expression of traditional conservative Christian values has effectively been "banned" in Britain under a new "secular conformity of belief and conduct".
According to the paper, Lord Carey argued that in "case after case" British courts have failed to protect Christian values, and urged European judges to correct the balance.
The hearing is due to start in Strasbourg on September 04 and will deal with many cases of religious discrimination against Christians.