Practice Relating to Rule 104. Respect for Convictions and Religious Practices

Note: For practice concerning the religious beliefs of the dead, see Rule 115, Section B. For practice concerning respect for the convictions and religious practices of persons deprived of their liberty, see Rule 127. For practice concerning the education of children, see Rule 135, Section B.
Hague Regulations (1899)
Article 46 of the 1899 Hague Regulations provides that “religious convictions and liberty, must be respected”. 
Regulations concerning the Laws and Customs of War on Land, annexed to Convention (II) with Respect to the Laws and Customs of War on Land, The Hague, 29 July 1899, Article 46.
Hague Regulations (1907)
Article 46 of the 1907 Hague Regulations provides that “religious convictions and practice, must be respected”. 
Regulations concerning the Laws and Customs of War on Land, annexed to Convention (IV) respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, The Hague, 18 October 1907, Article 46.
Geneva Convention IV
Article 27, first paragraph, of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV provides: “Protected persons are entitled, in all circumstances, to respect for … their religious convictions and practices”. 
Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 27, first para.
Geneva Convention IV
Article 38, third paragraph, of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV provides that protected persons “shall be allowed to practise their religion and to receive spiritual assistance from ministers of their faith”. 
Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 38, third para.
Geneva Convention IV
Article 58 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV provides:
The Occupying Power shall permit ministers of religion to give spiritual assistance to the members of their religious communities.
The Occupying Power shall also accept consignments of books and articles required for religious needs and shall facilitate their distribution in occupied territory. 
Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 58.
European Convention on Human Rights
Article 9 of the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights provides:
1. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching, practice and observance.
2. Freedom to manifest one’s religion or beliefs shall be subject only to such limitations as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of public safety, for the protection of public order, health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others. 
European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, Rome, 4 November 1950, as amended by Protocol No. 11, Strasbourg, 11 May 1994, Article 9.
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
Article 18 of the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights provides:
1. Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. This right shall include freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice, and freedom, either individually or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and teaching.
2. No one shall be subject to coercion which would impair his freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice.
3. Freedom to manifest one’s religion or beliefs may be subject only to such limitations as are prescribed by law and are necessary to protect public safety, order, health, or morals or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others. 
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, adopted by the UN General Assembly, Res. 2200 A (XXI), 16 December 1966, Article 18.
Under Article 4(2) of the Covenant no derogation may be made from this provision. 
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, adopted by the UN General Assembly, Res. 2200 A (XXI), 16 December 1966, Article 4(2).
American Convention on Human Rights
Article 12 of the 1969 American Convention on Human Rights provides:
1. Everyone has the right to freedom of conscience and of religion. This right includes freedom to maintain or to change one’s religion or beliefs, and freedom to profess or disseminate one’s religion or beliefs, either individually or together with others, in public or in private.
2. No one shall be subject to restrictions that might impair his freedom to maintain or to change his religion or beliefs.
3. Freedom to manifest one’s religion and beliefs may be subject only to the limitations prescribed by law that are necessary to protect public safety, order, health, or morals, or the rights or freedoms of others.
4. Parents or guardians, as the case may be, have the right to provide for the religious and moral education of their children or wards that is in accord with their own convictions. 
American Convention on Human Rights, adopted by the OAS Inter-American Specialized Conference on Human Rights, San José, 22 November 1969, also known as Pact of San José, Article 12.
Under Article 27(2) no derogation may be made from this provision. 
American Convention on Human Rights, adopted by the OAS Inter-American Specialized Conference on Human Rights, San José, 22 November 1969, also known as Pact of San José, Article 27(2).
Additional Protocol I
Article 75(1) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I provides that “[e]ach Party shall respect … the convictions and religious practices” of all persons who are in its power. 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 75(1). Article 75 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.43, 27 May 1977, p. 250.
Additional Protocol II
Article 4(1) of the 1977 Additional Protocol II provides that all persons hors de combat are entitled to respect for their convictions and religious practices. 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts (Protocol II), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 4(1). Article 4 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VII, CDDH/SR.50, 3 June 1977, p. 90.
African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights
Article 8 of the 1981 African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights provides:
Freedom of conscience, the profession and free practice of religion shall be guaranteed. No one may, subject to law and order, be submitted to measures restricting the exercise of these freedoms. 
African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, adopted by the Eighteenth Ordinary Session of the OAU Assembly of Heads of State and Government, Nairobi, 27 June 1981, OAU Doc. CAB/LEG/67/3 rev.5, Article 8.
Convention on the Rights of the Child
Article 14(1) of the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child provides: “States Parties shall respect the right of the child to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.” Article 14(3) provides:
Freedom to manifest one’s religion or beliefs may be subject only to such limitations as are prescribed by law and are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals, or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others. 
Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted by the UN General Assembly, Res. 44/25, 20 November 1989, Article 14(1) and (3).
Convention on the Rights of the Child
Article 30 of the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child provides:
In those States in which … religious … minorities … exist, a child belonging to such a minority … shall not be denied the right, in community with other members of his or her group, … to profess and practise his or her own religion. 
Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted by the UN General Assembly, Res. 44/25, 20 November 1989, Article 30.
Lieber Code
Article 37 of the 1863 Lieber Code provides: “The United States acknowledge and protect, in hostile countries occupied by them, religion and morality … Offenses to the contrary shall be rigorously punished.” 
Instructions for the Government of Armies of the United States in the Field, prepared by Francis Lieber, promulgated as General Order No. 100 by President Abraham Lincoln, Washington D.C., 24 April 1863, Article 37.
Brussels Declaration
Article 38 of the 1874 Brussels Declaration, in a section on “the military power with respect to private persons”, provides that the “religious convictions [of persons] and their practice, must be respected”. 
Project of an International Declaration concerning the Laws and Customs of War, Brussels, 27 August 1874, Article 38.
Oxford Manual
Article 49 of the 1880 Oxford Manual, in a section on “Rules of conduct with respect to persons” in occupied territory, provides that “their religious convictions and practice, must be respected”. 
The Laws of War on Land, adopted by the Institute of International Law, Oxford, 9 September 1880, Article 49.
American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man
Article III of the 1948 American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man states: “Every person has the right freely to profess a religious faith, and to manifest and practice it both in public and in private.” 
American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man, adopted by the Ninth International Conference of American States, Res. XXX, Bogotá, 2 May 1948, Article III.
Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Article 18 of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights provides:
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance. 
Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN General Assembly, Res. 217 A (III), 10 December 1948, Article 18.
UN Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination based on Religion or Belief
Article 1 of the 1981 UN Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination based on Religion or Belief provides:
Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. This right shall include freedom to have a religion or whatever belief of his choice, and freedom, either individually or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and teaching. 
Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination based on Religion or Belief, adopted by the UN General Assembly, Res. 36/55, 25 November 1981, Article 1.
Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Paragraph 4 of the 1991 Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia requires that all civilians be treated in accordance with Article 75 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of International Humanitarian Law between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Geneva, 27 November 1991, § 4.
Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Paragraph 2.3 of the 1992 Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina requires that all civilians be treated in accordance with Article 75 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Agreement between Representatives of Mr. Alija Izetbegović (President of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina and President of the Party of Democratic Action), Representatives of Mr. Radovan Karadžić (President of the Serbian Democratic Party), and Representative of Mr. Miljenko Brkić (President of the Croatian Democratic Community), Geneva, 22 May 1992, § 2.3.
UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin
Section 7.1 of the 1999 UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin provides:
Persons not, or no longer, taking part in military operations, including civilians, members of armed forces who have laid down their weapons and persons placed hors de combat by reason of sickness, wounds or detention … shall be accorded full respect for their … religious and other convictions. 
Observance by United Nations Forces of International Humanitarian Law, Secretary-General’s Bulletin, UN Secretariat, UN Doc. ST/SGB/1999/13, 6 August 1999, Section 7.1.
EU Charter of Fundamental Rights
Article 10 of the 2000 EU Charter of Fundamental Rights provides:
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. This right includes freedom to change religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or in private, to manifest religion or belief, in worship, teaching, practice and observance. 
Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, signed and proclaimed by the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission of the European Union, Nice, 7 December 2000, Article 10.
Argentina
Argentina’s Law of War Manual (1969) provides: “Protected persons have the right to respect for their beliefs and religious practice.” 
Argentina, Leyes de Guerra, RC-46-1, Público, II Edición 1969, Ejército Argentino, Edición original aprobado por el Comandante en Jefe del Ejército, 9 May 1967, § 4.010.
With respect to non-repatriated foreigners, the manual provides that they “shall have the possibility to practice their religion and receive spiritual assistance from a minister of religion”. 
Argentina, Leyes de Guerra, RC-46-1, Público, II Edición 1969, Ejército Argentino, Edición original aprobado por el Comandante en Jefe del Ejército, 9 May 1967, § 4.016.
Argentina
Argentina’s Law of War Manual (1989) provides: “Protected persons have the right, in any circumstance, to respect for their beliefs and religious practices.” 
Argentina, Leyes de Guerra, PC-08-01, Público, Edición 1989, Estado Mayor Conjunto de las Fuerzas Armadas, aprobado por Resolución No. 489/89 del Ministerio de Defensa, 23 April 1990, § 4.27.
With respect to non-repatriated foreigners, the manual states: “They shall be allowed to practice their religion and to receive spiritual assistance from ministers of their faith.” 
Argentina, Leyes de Guerra, PC-08-01, Público, Edición 1989, Estado Mayor Conjunto de las Fuerzas Armadas, aprobado por Resolución No. 489/89 del Ministerio de Defensa, 23 April 1990, § 4.30(4.3).
In the case of non-international armed conflict, the manual states: “All persons who do not directly take part in hostilities … have the right to be respected in their beliefs and religious practices”.  
Argentina, Leyes de Guerra, PC-08-01, Público, Edición 1989, Estado Mayor Conjunto de las Fuerzas Armadas, aprobado por Resolución No. 489/89 del Ministerio de Defensa, 23 April 1990, § 7.04.
Australia
Australia’s Defence Force Manual (1994) states that “religious convictions [of protected persons] … shall be respected”. 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 953.
Australia
Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states:
All persons are to be treated humanely in all circumstances and without any adverse distinction based upon … religion or belief … Their person, honour, convictions and religious practices must be respected. 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, § 9.45.
The manual also states with regard to the general treatment of protected persons in both their own territory and occupied territory that “religious convictions … of protected persons shall be respected”. 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, § 9.58; see also § 12.36.
The LOAC Manual (2006) replaces both the Defence Force Manual (1994) and the Commanders’ Guide (1994).
Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) provides that, in the territories of the parties to the conflict and in occupied territories, “religious conventions and practices … of protected persons must in all circumstances be respected”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 11-4, § 29; see also p. 12-4, § 37 (occupied territory).
It further provides that “the occupant is obligated to allow freedom of religion in the occupied territory”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 12-3, § 28.
According to the manual, “it is a duty of the occupant to see that religious convictions [of inhabitants of occupied territory] are not interfered with”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 12-5, § 36.
With respect to non-international armed conflicts, the manual states: “All persons not participating in the conflict or who have ceased to do so are entitled to … respect for their convictions and religious practices”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 17-3, § 19.
Canada
Canada’s Code of Conduct (2001) states: “Civilians [in a foreign land] are entitled in all circumstances to respect for … their religious convictions and practices, and their manners and customs.” 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 4 June 2001, Rule 4, § 2.
Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001), in its chapter on the treatment of civilians in the hands of a party to the conflict or an occupying power and, more specifically, in a section entitled “Provisions common to the territories of the parties to the conflict and to occupied territories”, states: “The person, honour, family rights, religious conventions and practices, and manners and customs of protected persons must in all circumstances be respected.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1118.
In the same chapter, in a section entitled “Aliens in the territory of a party to the conflict”, the manual states:
Subject to security requirements protected persons who remain in the territory of the belligerent must, in general, be treated in accordance with the rules governing the treatment of aliens in time of peace. In particular, they must be allowed to … practice their religion. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1123.
In the same chapter, in a section entitled “Treatment of internees”, the manual further states:
5. … Premises for the holding of religious services must be made available …
6. … [Internees] shall enjoy complete freedom to practice their own religion. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1129.5–6.
In its chapter on rights and duties of occupying powers, the manual also states:
1216. Freedom of Religion
1. The occupant is obligated to allow freedom of religion in the occupied territory. However, the clergy are obligated to refrain from reference to politics and are liable to appropriate sanctions if they use their position to incite resistance.
1222. Rights of Inhabitants of Occupied Territory
1. It is the duty of the occupant to see that the lives of the inhabitants are respected … [and that] their religious convictions are not interfered with …
2. In all circumstances … protected persons are entitled to respect for their … religious conventions and practices. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, §§ 1216.1 and 1222.
In its chapter on non-international armed conflicts, the manual states:
[The 1977 Additional Protocol II] provides that all persons not participating in the conflict or who have ceased to do so are entitled, whether under restriction or not, to respect for their persons, honour and convictions, and religious practices, and are, in all circumstances, to be treated humanely and without adverse distinction. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1711.2.
Canada
Rule 4 of Canada’s Code of Conduct (2005) instructs Canadian Forces (CF) personnel: “Treat all civilians humanely and respect civilian property”. 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 2005, Rule 4.
The Code of Conduct further explains:
Military operations in foreign lands expose CF personnel to civilian populations that differ markedly from our own. However different or unusual a foreign land may appear, these civilians are in all circumstances entitled to respect for their persons and property, their honour, their family rights, their religious convictions and practices, and their manners and customs. In your daily interaction with the civilian population, they must at all times be humanely treated and shall not be subjected to acts of violence, threats, or insults. Women and children in particular must not be subjected to rape, enforced prostitution, and any form of indecent assault. All civilians, subject to favourable considerations based on sex, health or age, must be treated with the same consideration and without any adverse distinction based in particular on race, religion or political opinion. 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 2005, Rule 4, § 2.
Central African Republic
The Central African Republic’s Instructor’s Manual (1999) states in Volume 2 (Instruction for group and patrol leaders): “Captured combatants and civilians who are under the authority of the adverse party are entitled to respect for their … convictions.” 
Central African Republic, Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 2: Formation pour l’obtention du certificat technique No. 2 (Chef de Groupe), du certificat Inter-Armé (CIA), du certificat d’aptitude de Chef de Patrouille (CACP), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter I, Fundamental Rules, § 4.
In Volume 3 (Instruction for non-commissioned officers studying for the level 1 and 2 certificates and for future officers of the criminal police), the manual states: “The … convictions and religious practices of all [civilian] persons must be respected.”  
Central African Republic, Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 3: Formation pour l’obtention du Brevet d’Armes No. 1, du Brevet d’Armes No. 2 et le stage d’Officier de Police Judiciaire (OPJ), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter I, Section I.
Chad
Chad’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states: “Honour [and] religion … shall be respected.” 
Chad, Droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces armées et de sécurité, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 92.
Colombia
Colombia’s Circular on Fundamental Rules of IHL (1992) provides: “Captured combatants and civilian persons who are under the power of the adverse party have the right to respect … for their convictions”. 
Colombia, Transcripción Normas Fundamentales del Derecho Humanitario Aplicables en los Conflictos Armados, Circular No. 033/DIPL-SERPO-526, Policía Nacional, Dirección General, Santafé de Bogotá, 14 May 1992, § 4.
Colombia
Colombia’s Basic Military Manual (1995) states: “A means to guarantee the rights of non-combatants is to respect their convictions and beliefs.” 
Colombia, Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual Básico para las Personerías y las Fuerzas Armadas de Colombia, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 1995, p. 21.
It further provides that it is a duty of the parties to the conflict “to permit religious practices”. 
Colombia, Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual Básico para las Personerías y las Fuerzas Armadas de Colombia, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 1995, p. 28.
Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic’s Military Manual (1980) instructs soldiers: “However different or unusual a foreign land may seem to you, remember to respect its people and their … religious beliefs”. 
Dominican Republic, La Conducta en Combate según las Leyes de la Guerra, Escuela Superior de las FF. AA. “General de Brigada Pablo Duarte”, Secretaría de Estado de las Fuerzas Armadas, May 1980, p. 10.
Ecuador
Ecuador’s Naval Manual (1989) prohibits “offences against civilian inhabitants of the occupied territory, including … infringing religious rights”. 
Ecuador, Aspectos Importantes del Derecho Internacional Marítimo que Deben Tener Presente los Comandantes de los Buques, Academia de Guerra Naval, 1989, § 6.2.5(1)-(2).
France
France’s LOAC Summary Note (1992) provides that all persons taking no direct part in the hostilities and persons hors de combat have the right to respect for their individual beliefs. 
France, Fiche de Synthèse sur les Règles Applicables dans les Conflits Armés, Note No. 432/DEF/EMA/OL.2/NP, Général de Corps d’Armée Voinot (pour l’Amiral Lanxade, Chef d’Etat-major des Armées), 1992, § 2.1(1).
France
France’s LOAC Teaching Note (2000) states: “Everybody has the right to respect … for their beliefs”. 
France, Fiche didactique relative au droit des conflits armés, Directive of the Ministry of Defence, 4 January 2000, annexed to the Directive No. 147 of the Ministry of Defence of 4 January 2000, p. 2.
France
France’s LOAC Manual (2001) refers to Article 75(1) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I and provides: “All the parties shall respect … religious practices of all persons [under their power]”. 
France, Manuel de droit des conflits armés, Ministère de la Défense, Direction des Affaires Juridiques, Sous-Direction du droit international humanitaire et du droit européen, Bureau du droit des conflits armés, 2001, p. 51.
Germany
Germany’s Military Manual (1992) provides: “Civilians who do not take part in hostilities … are entitled to respect for their religious convictions”. 
Germany, Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflicts – Manual, DSK VV207320067, edited by The Federal Ministry of Defence of the Federal Republic of Germany, VR II 3, August 1992, English translation of ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, August 1992, § 502; see also § 532.
The manual further provides that the belligerent shall ensure the “freedom of religion” to aliens remaining in the territory of a party to the conflict. 
Germany, Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflicts – Manual, DSK VV207320067, edited by The Federal Ministry of Defence of the Federal Republic of Germany, VR II 3, August 1992, English translation of ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, August 1992, § 585.
Hungary
Hungary’s Military Manual (1992) provides for “respect for the religious convictions” of civilians in occupied territories. 
Hungary, A Hadijog, Jegyzet a Katonai, Föiskolák Hallgatói Részére, Magyar Honvédség Szolnoki Repülötiszti Föiskola, 1992, p. 97.
Indonesia
Indonesia’s Directive on Human Rights in Trikora (1995) states that respect for personal and human dignity includes a prohibition on the violation or derogation of individual rights, such as freedom of thought, conscience and religion. 
Indonesia, Directive concerning the Respect of Human Rights in Military Operations, issued by the Commander of the Regional Military Command of Trikora, No. Skep/96/XII/1995, 1 November 1995, § 4(a).
Israel
Israel’s Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) states:
The population of occupied areas
International law governs the duty of the army and its authority over populations in occupied areas or in zones under military occupation during battle[.] The Fourth Geneva Convention includes a complete list of instructions that is binding upon the army in its dealings with the civilian population in an occupied area and regulate the army’s authority (for example … the duty to preserve the freedom of worship and more).
The State of Israel claimed in the past that the Convention, at least in part, does not constitute customary international law, however, for political reasons it applies the humanitarian provisions of the Convention de facto, with respect to everything concerning the Occupied Territories. 
Israel, Rules of Warfare on the Battlefield, Military Advocate-General’s Corps Command, IDF School of Military Law, Second Edition, 2006, p. 27.
The Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) is a second edition of the Manual on the Laws of War (1998).
Italy
Italy’s IHL Manual (1991) provides that, in occupied territory, civilians have the right to respect for their religious convictions and practices. 
Italy, Manuale di diritto umanitario, Introduzione e Volume I, Usi e convenzioni di Guerra, SMD-G-014, Stato Maggiore della Difesa, I Reparto, Ufficio Addestramento e Regolamenti, Rome, 1991, Vol. I, § 41(a).
Kenya
Kenya’s LOAC Manual (1997) provides: “Religious convictions and practices are to be respected.” 
Kenya, Law of Armed Conflict, Military Basic Course (ORS), 4 Précis, The School of Military Police, 1997, Précis No. 4, p. 2.
Madagascar
Madagascar’s Military Manual (1994) provides: “Captured combatants and civilians in the power of the adverse party have the right to respect for … their beliefs”. 
Madagascar, Le Droit des Conflits Armés, Ministère des Forces Armées, August 1994, p. 91, Rule 4.
Mexico
Mexico’s Army and Air Force Manual (2009) states:
The States party to the [1949] Geneva Conventions undertake to:
B. respect human beings and their person, their honour, their dignity, their family rights and their religious and moral convictions. 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 80(B); see also § 104.
In a section on the 1949 Geneva Convention III, the manual also states: “Prisoners of war … must be allowed to practise their religion.” 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 378(A).
In a section on the 1949 Geneva Convention IV, the manual states: “The occupying power must permit ministers of religion to give spiritual assistance to the members of their religious communities.” 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 234(G).
In a section on the 1949 Geneva Convention IV, the manual further states: “All persons are entitled, in all circumstances, to respect for … their religious convictions and practices and their manners and customs.” 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 380.
Netherlands
The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands states:
Starting with the introduction of the UN Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, followed by many treaties and conventions at world and regional level, there has come into being an extensive corpus of rules and procedures by which states have undertaken to respect and guarantee human rights. A number of these rights are so important that they are binding even on states which are not party to the conventions and permit no deviation from them, even in emergency situations such as war. These core rights, including … religious freedom, are just as relevant in time of armed conflict as in time of peace. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 0116.
In its chapter on the protection of prisoners of war, the manual refers to “respect for fundamental rights such as freedom of conscience and worship” as a “priority”. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 0711.
In its chapter on the protection of the civilian population, the manual states: “Protected persons are entitled, in all circumstances, to respect for their persons, their honour, their family rights and their religious convictions.” 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 0806.
In its chapter on non-international armed conflict, the manual states:
Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, and Article 4 of AP II [1977 Additional Protocol II], contain a number of fundamental guarantees of humane treatment that relate to all who are not participating directly in the hostilities, or have ceased to do so. Primarily this means civilians, but also members of the armed forces, dissident militias and armed groups who, due to wounds, sickness or capture, are no longer taking part in the combat or have been placed hors de combat … They are all entitled to respect for their persons and convictions, and to practise their religion. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 1049.
New Zealand
New Zealand’s Military Manual (1992) provides that “religious convictions and practices … of protected persons must in all circumstances be respected”. 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1114.
The manual further provides that protected persons who remain in the territory of the belligerents “must be allowed … to practise their religion”. 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1118.
According to the manual, “the Occupying Power has a duty to allow freedom of religion in the occupied territory”. 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1315.
In addition, the manual states that “it is the duty of the Occupying Power to see that … [the] religious convictions [of the inhabitants] are not interfered with” and that “according to the [1949 Geneva Convention IV], protected persons are entitled in all circumstances to respect for … their religious convictions and practices”. 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1321(1)–(2).
Nicaragua
Nicaragua’s Military Manual (1996) states: “Victims of an armed conflict have the right in any circumstance to respect for … their beliefs and religious practices”. 
Nicaragua, Manual de Comportamiento y Proceder de las Unidades Militares y de los Miembros del Ejército de Nicaragua en Tiempo de Paz, Conflictos Armados, Situaciones Irregulares o Desastres Naturales, Ejército de Nicaragua, Estado Mayor General, Asesoría Jurídica del Nicaragua, 1996, Article 14(30).
Peru
Peru’s IHL Manual (2004) states that the “honour and religious convictions and practices [of the civilian population] must be respected”. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 32.d.
The manual further states with regard to the civilian population during occupation: “Religious beliefs and practices must be respected and ministers of religion must be permitted, with the aid of the occupying power, to give spiritual assistance to the members of their religious communities.” 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 62.a.
Peru
Peru’s IHL and Human Rights Manual (2010) states that the “honour and religious convictions and practices [of the civilian population] must be respected”. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario y Derechos Humanos para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial No. 049-2010/DE/VPD, Lima, 21 May 2010, § 33(d), p. 251
The manual further states with regard to the civilian population during occupation: “Religious beliefs and practices must be respected. Religious personnel must be permitted, with the aid of the occupying power, to give spiritual assistance to the members of their religious communities.” 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario y Derechos Humanos para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial No. 049-2010/DE/VPD, Lima, 21 May 2010, § 33(c), p. 266; see also § 59, p. 263.
Russian Federation
The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states that, in occupied territory, the “ways and habits of the civilian population shall be respected”. 
Russian Federation, Regulations on the Application of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, Moscow, 8 August 2001, § 75.
With regard to internal armed conflict, the Regulations states:
All persons who do not take a direct part or who have ceased to take part in hostilities, whether or not their liberty has been restricted, are entitled to respect for their … convictions and religious practices. 
Russian Federation, Regulations on the Application of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, Moscow, 8 August 2001, § 81.
Romania
Romania Soldiers’ Manual (1991) provides that captured combatants and civilians have the right to respect for their convictions and to practice their religion freely. 
Romania, Manualul Soldatului, Ghid de comportare în luptă, Asociaţia Română de Drept Umanitar (ARDU), 1991, p. 33, § 1.
Spain
Spain’s LOAC Manual (1996) states: “Religious beliefs and the practice of worship shall be respected.” 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Publicación OR7-004, 2 Tomos, aprobado por el Estado Mayor del Ejército, Division de Operaciones, 18 March 1996, Vol. I, § 2.7.c.(3).
The manual further states: “The civilian population has the right to respect for its religious beliefs.” 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Publicación OR7-004, 2 Tomos, aprobado por el Estado Mayor del Ejército, Division de Operaciones, 18 March 1996, Vol. I, § 5.6.a.(1).
Spain
Spain’s LOAC Manual (2007) states that, during occupation, “religious convictions and practices must be respected”. 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Tomo 1, Publicación OR7–004, (Edición Segunda), Mando de Adiestramiento y Doctrina, Dirección de Doctrina, Orgánica y Materiales, 2 November 2007, § 2.7.c.(3).
Sweden
Sweden’s IHL Manual (1991) considers that the fundamental guarantees for persons in the power of one party to the conflict as contained in Article 75 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I are a part of customary international law. 
Sweden, International Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflict, with reference to the Swedish Total Defence System, Swedish Ministry of Defence, January 1991, Section 2.2.3, p. 19.
The manual provides: “As a general rule, civilians within an occupied area shall, as protected persons, under all circumstances enjoy respect as to … religious convictions and practice”. 
Sweden, International Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflict, with reference to the Swedish Total Defence System, Swedish Ministry of Defence, January 1991, Section 6.1.3, p. 122.
The manual also provides:
Occupation shall not involve any change in the faith and religious practice of the population. The IV Geneva Convention contains a number of articles providing protection for religion, faith and religious practices, without this being linked to any particular confession. 
Sweden, International Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflict, with reference to the Swedish Total Defence System, Swedish Ministry of Defence, January 1991, Section 6.1.3, pp. 127–128.
Switzerland
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) provides, with respect to civilians in the power of a party to the conflict: “Religious convictions and customs shall be respected.” 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Article 146.
In the case of occupied territories, the manual states: “The ministers of religion shall be able to give spiritual assistance to the members of their religious communities. Religious convictions and performing religious practices shall be respected.” 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Article 167.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK Military Manual (1958) states: “Protected persons who remain in the territory of the belligerent must, in general, … be allowed … to practice their religion.” 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, § 46.
In the case of occupied territories, the manual states: “Public worship must be permitted and religious convictions respected by the Occupant, who must permit ministers of religion to give spiritual assistance to the members of their religious communities.” 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, § 536.
The manual also states: “It is a duty of the Occupant to see that … [the] religious convictions [of the inhabitants] are not interfered with.” It adds: “According to the [1949 Geneva Convention IV], protected persons are entitled in all circumstances to respect for … their religious convictions and practices.” 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, §§ 546 and 547.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK LOAC Pamphlet (1981) states: “In all circumstances … religious convictions … of protected persons should be respected.” 
United Kingdom, The Law of Armed Conflict, D/DAT/13/35/66, Army Code 71130 (Revised 1981), Ministry of Defence, prepared under the Direction of The Chief of the General Staff, 1981, Section 9, p. 34, § 9.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK LOAC Manual (2004) states: “The person, honour, family rights, religious convictions and practices, and the manners and customs of protected persons must in all circumstances be respected.” 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 9.21.
In its chapter on occupied territory, the manual specifies:
Public worship must be permitted by the occupying power and religious convictions respected, ministers of religion being permitted to give spiritual assistance to members of their religious communities. The occupying power must also accept consignments of books and articles needed for religious purposes and facilitate their distribution within the territory. If the salaries of the clergy are paid by the state and the occupying power collects the taxes, it must continue to pay them. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 11.39 11 .
In its chapter on internal armed conflict, the manual restates the following provision of the 1977 Additional Protocol II:
“All persons who do not take a direct part or who have ceased to take part in hostilities, whether or not their liberty has been restricted, are entitled to respect for their person, honour and convictions and religious practices …”. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 15.36.
United States of America
The US Field Manual (1956) reproduces Articles 27, 38, third paragraph, and 58 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV. It also uses the same wording as Article 46 of the 1907 Hague Regulations. 
United States, Field Manual 27-10, The Law of Land Warfare, US Department of the Army, 18 July 1956, as modified by Change No. 1, 15 July 1976, § 110 (Article 34 of the 1949 Geneva Convention III), § 266 (Article 27 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV), § 277 (Article 38 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV), § 387 (Article 58 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV), § 293 (Article 86 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV), § 300 (Article 93 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV) and § 380.
United States of America
The US Air Force Pamphlet (1976) recalls that the 1949 Geneva Convention IV contains provisions on the treatment of protected persons, including “to respect … religious customs”. 
United States, Air Force Pamphlet 110-31, International Law – The Conduct of Armed Conflict and Air Operations, US Department of the Air Force, 1976, § 14-4.
The Pamphlet adds that protected persons in the territory of a belligerent “in any case, are entitled … to practice their religion”. 
United States, Air Force Pamphlet 110-31, International Law – The Conduct of Armed Conflict and Air Operations, US Department of the Air Force, 1976, § 14-5.
The Pamphlet refers to Article 46 of the 1907 Hague Regulations and provides for respect for “religious convictions and practices”. 
United States, Air Force Pamphlet 110-31, International Law – The Conduct of Armed Conflict and Air Operations, US Department of the Air Force, 1976, § 14-6(a).
United States of America
The US Soldier’s Manual (1984) instructs soldiers: “However different or unusual a foreign land may seem to you, remember to respect its people and their honor, family rights, religious beliefs, and customs.” 
United States, Your Conduct in Combat under the Law of War, Publication No. FM 27-2, Headquarters Department of the Army, Washington, November 1984, p. 21.
United States of America
The US Naval Handbook (1995) provides that “[t]he following acts are representative war crimes: … infringement of religious rights” of civilian inhabitants of occupied territory. 
United States, The Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, NWP 1-14M/MCWP 5-2.1/COMDTPUB P5800.7, issued by the Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters, US Marine Corps, and Department of Transportation, US Coast Guard, October 1995 (formerly NWP 9 (Rev. A)/FMFM 1-10, October 1989), § 6.2.5(1) and (2).
Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe’s Code of Conduct for Combatants (1993) states: “As a State party to the [1949] Geneva Conventions … your country is bound by these treaties … The States party to the Geneva Conventions pledge to … [r]espect the moral and religious convictions of the individual. 
Zimbabwe, Code of Conduct for Combatants, Joint publication of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces and the International Committee of the Red Cross Regional Delegation in Harare, 1993, pp. 14–16.
Note. Numerous constitutions protect the right to freedom of conscience and of religion. 
See, e.g., Ethiopia, Constitution, 1994, Article 27(1); India, Constitution, 1950, Article 25(1); Kenya, Constitution, 1992, Article 78; Kuwait, Constitution, 1962, Article 35; Kyrgyzstan, Constitution, 1993, Article 16(2); Mexico, Constitution, 1917, Article 24; Russian Federation, Constitution, 1993, Article 28.
These have not been listed here.
Bangladesh
Bangladesh’s International Crimes (Tribunal) Act (1973) states that the “violation of any humanitarian rules applicable in armed conflicts laid down in the Geneva Conventions of 1949” is a crime. 
Bangladesh, International Crimes (Tribunal) Act, 1973, Section 3(2)(e).
Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Criminal Code (1998) provides that compelling civilians to “forcible conversion to another … religion” is a war crime. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Federation, Criminal Code, 1998, Article 154(1).
The Republika Srpska’s Criminal Code (2000) contains the same provision. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Republika Srpska, Criminal Code, 2000, Articles 433(1), 434 and 435.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Criminal Code (2003) states that, in time of war, armed conflict or occupation, ordering or imposing “the forced conversion [of civilians] to another … religion”, in violation of international law, constitutes a war crime. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Criminal Code, 2003, Article 173(1)(d).
China
China’s Criminal Law (1979), as amended in 1997, states:
Any functionary of a State organ who unlawfully deprives a citizen of his or her freedom of religious belief or infringes upon the customs and habits of an ethnic group, if the circumstances are serious, shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not more than two years or criminal detention. 
China, Criminal Law, 1979, as amended in 1997, Article 251.
China
China’s Constitution (1982), as amended in 2004, states:
Citizens of the People’s Republic of China enjoy freedom of religious belief.
No State organ, public organization or individual may compel citizens to believe in, or not to believe in, any religion; nor may they discriminate against citizens who believe in, or do not believe in, any religion.
The State protects normal religious activities. No one may make use of religion to engage in activities that disrupt public order, impair the health of citizens or interfere with the educational system of the State.
Religious bodies and religious affairs are not subject to any foreign domination. 
China, Constitution, 1982, as amended in 2004, Article 36.
Croatia
Croatia’s Criminal Code (1997) provides that “conversion to another religion” of civilian population is a war crime. 
Croatia, Criminal Code, 1997, Article 158.
Denmark
Denmark’s Military Criminal Code (1973), as amended in 1978, provides:
Any person who uses war instruments or procedures the application of which violates an international agreement entered into by Denmark or the general rules of international law, shall be liable to the same penalty [i.e. a fine, lenient imprisonment or up to 12 years’ imprisonment]. 
Denmark, Military Criminal Code, 1973, as amended in 1978, § 25(1).
Denmark’s Military Criminal Code (2005) provides:
Any person who deliberately uses war means [“krigsmiddel”] or procedures the application of which violates an international agreement entered into by Denmark or international customary law, shall be liable to the same penalty [i.e. imprisonment up to life imprisonment]. 
Denmark, Military Criminal Code, 2005, § 36(2).
Ethiopia
Ethiopia’s Penal Code (1957) provides that “forcible religious conversion” is a war crime against the civilian population. 
Ethiopia, Penal Code, 1957, Article 282(e).
Ethiopia’s Criminal Code (2004) states:
Article 270.- War Crimes against the Civilian Population.
Whoever, in time of war, armed conflict or occupation organizes, orders or engages in, against the civilian population and in violation of the rules of public international law and of international humanitarian conventions:
(e) … forcible religious conversion …
is punishable with rigorous imprisonment from five years to twenty-five years, or, in more serious cases, with life imprisonment or death. 
Ethiopia, Criminal Code, 2004, Article 270.
The Criminal Code of 2004 repealed Ethiopia’s Penal Code of 1957.
India
India’s Assam Rifles Act (2006) provides that it is an offence to defile “any place of worship, or otherwise, intentionally [insult] the religion, or [wound] the religious feelings of, any person”. 
India, Assam Rifles Act, 2006, Section 50(b).
India
India’s Sashastra Seema Bal Act (2007) states that it is an offence to defile “any place of worship, or otherwise, intentionally [insult] the religion, or [wound] the religious feelings of, any person”. 
India, Sashastra Seema Bal Act, 2007, Section 44(b).
Ireland
Ireland’s Geneva Conventions Act (1962), as amended in 1998, provides that any “minor breach” of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, including violations of Articles 27, 38 and 58 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV, and of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, including violations of Article 75(1), as well as any “contravention” of the 1977 Additional Protocol II, including violations of Article 4(1), are punishable offences. 
Ireland, Geneva Conventions Act, 1962, as amended in 1998, Section 4(1) and (4).
Lithuania
Under Lithuania’s Criminal Code (1961), as amended in 1998, “compelling [civilians] to convert to another faith” constitutes a war crime. 
Lithuania, Criminal Code, 1961, as amended in 1998, Article 336.
Myanmar
Myanmar’s Defence Services Act (1959) provides for the punishment of “any person subject to this law who … by defiling any place of worship, or otherwise, intentionally insults the religions or wounds the religious feelings of any person”. 
Myanmar, Defence Services Act, 1959, Section 66(b).
Nepal
Nepal’s Army Act (2006) identifies “disturbing the sacredness of a religious place or … knowingly disrespecting the religion of any other person by any other means or … causing disrespect to religious sentiments” as an offence. 
Nepal, Army Act, 2006, Section 63(1)(b).
Norway
Norway’s Military Penal Code (1902), as amended in 1981, provides:
Anyone who contravenes or is accessory to the contravention of provisions relating to the protection of persons or property laid down in … the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 … [and in] the two additional protocols to these Conventions …is liable to imprisonment. 
Norway, Military Penal Code, 1902, as amended in 1981, § 108.
Serbia
Serbia’s Criminal Code (2005) states that, in time of war, armed conflict or occupation, ordering or committing the “forced change of … religion” against members of the civilian population, in violation of international law, constitutes a war crime. 
Serbia, Criminal Code, 2005, Article 372(1); see also Article 131(1).
Slovenia
Under Slovenia’s Penal Code (1994), “conversion of the population to another religion” is a war crime. 
Slovenia, Penal Code, 1994, Article 374(1).
United States of America
The US Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act (2004), states in Title V—Border Protection, Immigration and Visa Matters; Subtitle E—Treatment of Aliens Who Commit Acts of Torture, Extrajudicial Killings or Other Atrocities Abroad:
§ 5502. Inadmissibility and Deportability of Foreign Government Officials Who have Committed Particularly Severe Violations of Religious Freedom.
(a) GROUND OF INADMISSIBILITY.—Section 212(a)(2)(G) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(2)(G)) is amended to read as follows:
“(G) FOREIGN GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS WHO HAVE COMMITTED PARTICULARLY SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.—Any alien who, while serving as a foreign government official, was responsible for or directly carried out, at any time, particularly severe violations of religious freedom, as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 (22 U.S.C. 6402), is inadmissible.”
(b) GROUND OF DEPORTABILITY.—Section 237(a)(4) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(4)) is amended by adding at the end the following:
“(E) PARTICIPATED IN THE COMMISSION OF SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.—Any alien described in section 212(a)(2)(G) is deportable.” 
United States, Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act, 2004, Public Law 108-458, 17 December 2004, Title V, Subtitle E, § 5502.
United States of America
In July 2007, and in accordance with section 6(a)(3) of the US Military Commissions Act (2006), the US President issued an Executive Order which stated that a “Program of Detention and Interrogation Operated by the Central Intelligence Agency” complied with US obligations under common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions. The Executive Order stated in part:
Sec. 3. Compliance of a Central Intelligence Agency Detention and Interrogation Program with Common Article 3.
(a) Pursuant to the authority of the President under the Constitution and the laws of the United States, including the Military Commissions Act of 2006, this order interprets the meaning and application of the text of Common Article 3 with respect to certain detentions and interrogations, and shall be treated as authoritative for all purposes as a matter of United States law, including satisfaction of the international obligations of the United States. I hereby determine that Common Article 3 shall apply to a program of detention and interrogation operated by the Central Intelligence Agency as set forth in this section. The requirements set forth in this section shall be applied with respect to detainees in such program without adverse distinction as to their race, color, religion or faith, sex, birth, or wealth.
(b) I hereby determine that a program of detention and interrogation approved by the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency fully complies with the obligations of the United States under Common Article 3, provided that:
(i) the conditions of confinement and interrogation practices of the program do not include:
(F) acts intended to denigrate the religion, religious practices, or religious objects of the individual. 
United States, Executive Order 13440, Interpretation of the Geneva Conventions Common Article 3 as Applied to a Program of Detention and Interrogation Operated by the Central Intelligence Agency, 20 July 2007.
Venezuela
Venezuela’s Law on the State of Emergency (2001), which includes situations of internal and international armed conflict, states:
In accordance with Articles 339 of the Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Article 4(2) of the [1966] International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and Article 27(2) of the [1969] American Convention on Human Rights, the guarantee to the [following] rights must not be restricted:
9. The [right to] freedom of thought, conscience and religion. 
Venezuela, Law on the State of Emergency, 2001, Article 7(9).
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s Criminal Offences against the Nation and State Act (1945) considers that, during war or enemy occupation, “any person who ordered, assisted or otherwise was the direct executor of … forced conversion to any other faith” committed war crimes. 
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of, Criminal Offences against the Nation and State Act, 1945, Article 3(3).
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s Penal Code (1976), as amended in 2001, provides that “conversion of the population to another religion” is a war crime. 
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of, Penal Code, 1976, as amended in 2001, Article 142.
Australia
In the Tanaka Chuichi case before an Australian military court in 1946, the accused had ill-treated Sikh prisoners of war, had cut their hair and beards and had forced some of them to smoke a cigarette, acts contrary to their culture and religion. The Court found the accused guilty of violations of, inter alia, the 1929 Geneva POW Convention. 
Australia, Military Court at Rabaul, Tanaka Chuichi case, Judgment, 12 July 1946.
Colombia
In 2007, in the Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, the Plenary Chamber of Colombia’s Constitutional Court stated:
Taking into account … the development of customary international humanitarian law applicable in internal armed conflicts, the Constitutional Court notes that the fundamental guarantees stemming from the principle of humanity, some of which have attained ius cogens status, … [include] the obligation to respect the convictions and religious practices of civilians and persons hors de combat. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, Judgment of 25 April 2007, p. 112.
[footnote in original omitted]
Israel
In its judgment in the Beit Sourik Village Council case in 2004, Israel’s High Court of Justice stated:
35. The approach of this Court is well anchored in the humanitarian law of public international law. This is set forth in Regulation 46 of the Hague Regulations and Article 46 of the Fourth Geneva Convention. Regulation 46 of the Hague Regulations provides:
Family honour and rights, the lives of persons, and private property, as well as religious convictions and practice, must be respected. Private property cannot be confiscated.
Article 27 of the Fourth Geneva Convention provides:
Protected persons are entitled, in all circumstances, to respect for their persons, their honour, their family rights, their religious convictions and practices, and their manners and customs. They shall at all times be humanely treated, and shall be protected especially against all acts of violence or threats thereof … However, the Parties to the conflict may take such measures of control and security in regard to protected persons as may be necessary as a result of the war.
These rules are founded upon a recognition of the value of man and the sanctity of his life. See Physicians for Human Rights, at para. 11. Interpreting Article 27 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, Pictet writes:
Article 27 … occupies a key position among the articles of the Convention. It is the basis of the Convention, proclaiming as it does the principles on which the whole “Geneva Law” is founded. It proclaims the principle of respect for the human person and the inviolable character of the basic rights of individual men and women … the right of respect for the person must be understood in its widest sense: it covers all the rights of the individual, that is, the rights and qualities which are inseparable from the human being by the very fact of his existence and his mental and physical powers, it includes, in particular, the right to physical, moral and intellectual integrity – one essential attribute of the human person. 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Beit Sourik Village Council case, Judgment, 30 June 2004, § 35.
Israel
In its judgment in the Municipality of Bethlehem case in 2005, Israel’s High Court of Justice stated:
12. The freedom of religion and worship is recognized in our law as one of the basic human rights. This freedom was already mentioned in article 83 of the Palestine Order in Council, 1922, and in the Declaration of Independence. Freedom of religion and worship has been recognized in the case law of this court for a long time (see, for example, HCJ 292/83 Temple Mount Faithful v. Jerusalem District Police Commissioner [9], at p. 454; [10] HCJ 650/88 Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism v. Minister of Religious Affairs [10], at p. 381; HCJ 257/89 Hoffman v. Western Wall Superintendent [11], at pp. 340–341; HCJ 1514/01 Gur Aryeh v. Second Television and Radio Authority [12], at p. 277). Freedom of worship was recognized as an expression of freedom of religion, and as a branch of freedom of expression (HCJ 7128/96 Temple Mount Faithful v. Government of Israel [13], at pp. 523–524; Hass v. IDF Commander in West Bank [3], at para. 19), and there are some who also regard it as an aspect of human dignity (President Barak in HCJ 3261/93 Manning v. Minister of Justice [14], at p. 286, and in CA 6024/97 Shavit v. Rishon LeZion Jewish Burial Society [16], at p. 649 {___}). Within the scope of freedom of religion and freedom of worship the court has also recognized the yearning of persons of religious belief to pray at sites that are holy to them (Hass v. IDF Commander in West Bank [3], at para. 16). To this we can also add the recognition of the freedom of access for members of the various religions to the places that are sacred to them as a right that is worthy of protection, which is also enshrined in Israeli law in the Protection of Holy Places Law, 5727-1967 (ss. 1 and 2(b) of the law).
The status of the freedom of worship was discussed not long ago by this court in Hass v. IDF Commander in West Bank [3], per Justice Procaccia:
“The freedom of religion is a constitutional basic right of the individual, with a preferred status even in relation to other constitutional human rights. The freedom of worship constitutes an expression of freedom of religion, and it is an offshoot of freedom of expression … The constitutional protection given to freedom of worship is therefore similar, in principle, to the protection given to freedom of speech, and the constitutional balancing formula that befits the one is also applicable to the other … We are concerned with a constitutional right of great strength whose weight is great when it is balanced against conflicting social values” (ibid. [3], at para. 19).
Moreover:
“The freedom of religion and worship … is regarded as a constitutional right of supreme status that should be realized in so far as possible in view of the conditions prevailing in the territories, while protecting the safety and lives of the worshippers” (ibid. [3], at para. 15).
14. The freedom of worship is not an absolute right. It is a relative right that may, in certain circumstances, yield to other public interests or basic rights … Indeed, in certain situations, the military commander may restrict or even prevent the realization of freedom of worship at a certain place in order to protect public order and public safety and in order to protect the lives and safety of the worshippers themselves (see Hass v. IDF Commander in West Bank [3], at para. 19; see also HCJ 2725/93 Salomon v. Jerusalem District Commissioner of Police [14]; HCJ 4044/93 Salomon v. Jerusalem District Commissioner of Police [15]). But before he restricts the worshippers’ freedom of worship, the military commander should examine whether he is able to adopt reasonable measures that will allow the realization of the freedom of worship while ensuring the safety of the worshippers. 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Municipality of Bethlehem case, Judgment, 3 February 2005, §§ 12 and 14.
Israel
In its judgment in the Committee for the Development of Hebron case in 2006, Israel’s High Court of Justice stated:
Every person is given the right to freedom of religion, faith, and worship. This is a fundamental constitutional right, and it is given, of course, also to residents of the region. The right of a person to exercise the fundamentals tenets of his faith, this being the freedom of worship, was recognized as far back as article 83 of the Palestinian Order in Council, 1922. Upon its establishment, in 5708 [1948], the State of Israel proclaimed, among its founding goals, the principles of freedom of religion and worship, in its declaration of independence, “… it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture; it will safeguard the Holy Places of all religions …” This commitment found additional expression with enactment of the Preservation of Holy Places Law, 5727 – 1967. This court, too, has recognized freedom of worship as a fundamental right (HCJ 292/83, The Temple Mount Faithful v. Police Commander of the Jerusalem Region, P. D. 38 (2), 449, 454 (1984); HCJ 257/89, Hofmann v. Supervisor of the Western Wall, P. D. 48 (2) 265, 340-341 (1994)). The protection given the freedom of worship does not result only from recognition of the right of every person to carry out his religious commandments, to pray in his holy places, and carry out the rituals of members of his faith, but also from the perspective of this freedom as a branch of the freedom of expression (Hass, 462), and also from its being a branch of the broad category of human dignity (HCJ 3261/93, Manning v. Minister of Justice, P. D. 47 (3) 282, 286 (1993)). Indeed, the freedom of worship as an expression of freedom of religion is a basic right given to the person to express his religious feelings and to fulfill his beliefs, and as such is necessary to form the person’s individual identity. In this content, it is appropriate to bring the comments of Justice Procaccia in Hass:
The freedom of worship as an expression of freedom of religion is one of the basic human rights. It is the freedom of the individual to believe and to act in accordance with his belief, by observing its precepts and customs … This freedom is related to a person’s realization of his own identity. This freedom recognizes the desire of a believer to pray at a holy site. This recognition is a part of the broad constitutional protection given to the right of access of members of the various religions to the places that are holy to them, and the prohibition against injuring their sensibilities with regard to those places … The freedom of religion is regarded as a branch of freedom of expression in the sphere of religious belief.
We also accept that the freedom of worship includes as well the right of access to holy sites, inasmuch as the latter is necessary to realize the former (Hass, 461). In this context, Justice Procaccia added, in Hass:
The freedom of religion and worship is granted as a constitutional right to the population living in the territories, both Jews and Arabs. It is regarded as a constitutional right of supreme status that should be realized in so far as possible in view of the conditions prevailing in the territories, while protecting the safety and lives of the worshipers.
However, notwithstanding the view of freedom of worship as a recognized right on its own, it, like most other rights, is not absolute, but is relative, and may be balanced against other interests and freedoms (HCJ 292/83, supra, 455). 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Committee for the Development of Hebron case, Judgment, 27 June 2006, § 8.
Netherlands
In its judgment in the Zuhlke case in 1948, a Special Court of Cassation of the Netherlands held that refusal to admit a clergyman or priest to a person awaiting execution of the death sentence constituted a war crime. 
Netherlands, Special Court of Cassation, Zuhlke case, Judgment, 6 December 1948.
Algeria
In 2006, in its third periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, Algeria stated:
57. Since 1991, Algeria has had to confront terrorism in an atmosphere of indifference and suspicion. Efforts to combat this scourge, requiring the implementation of special measures, have always been deployed within the framework of the law and respect for human dignity.
58. In order to deal with this exceptional situation, in February 1992 the Algerian authorities decided to declare – as they are entitled to do under the Constitution – a state of emergency. Although the state of emergency did impose some restrictions on the exercise of civil rights and liberties, it did not relieve the State of its obligations to guarantee the right to exercise the fundamental civil liberties provided for in the existing domestic constitutional order and in the international agreements ratified by Algeria.
59. The exceptional measures taken during the state of emergency were all accompanied by guarantees for the protection of human rights. No restrictions were placed on the rights and freedoms enshrined in inter alia, article 18] of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. 
Algeria, Third periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, 7 November 2006, UN Doc. CCPR/C/DZA/3, submitted 22 September 2006, §§ 57–59.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
In 2005, in its initial report to the Human Rights Committee, Bosnia and Herzegovina stated:
204. [Under the Law on Freedom of Religion and on the Legal Status of Churches and Religious Communities in Bosnia and Herzegovina (2004)] it is regulated that every person has the right to freedom of religion and beliefs, including the right to freedom of public confessing and not confessing. Everyone also has the right to accept or change religion …
205. … [C]hurches and religious communities, during the preaching or other activities, must not support or spread intolerance and prejudices towards other churches and religious communities and their worshipers, or citizens without religious orientation, or inhibit them in their free, public expression of religion or other belief. They also must not perform rites and other aspects of expression of religion in any way that is opposed to legal order, public security, or morale, or which has a damaging effect on life or health, or on the rights and freedoms of others. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Initial report to the Human Rights Committee, 24 November 2005, UN Doc. CCPR/C/BIH/1, §§ 204–205.
Canada
In 2011, in a statement before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the deputy permanent representative of Canada stated: “[W]e must vigorously defend the rights of vulnerable religious minorities in situations of armed conflict who are persecuted for their religious beliefs.” 
Canada, Statement by the deputy permanent representative of Canada during a UN Security Council meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 9 November 2011.
Canada
In 2012, in a statement before the UN Security Council during an open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of Canada stated: “[W]e must take action to defend the rights of vulnerable religious minorities in situations of armed conflict who are persecuted for their beliefs.” 
Canada, Statement by the permanent representative of Canada during a UN Security Council open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 25 June 2012.
Canada
In 2013, in a statement before the UN Security Council during an open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the deputy permanent representative of Canada stated: “We must take action to defend the rights of vulnerable religious minorities in situations of armed conflict who are persecuted for their beliefs.” 
Canada, Statement by the deputy permanent representative of Canada during a UN Security Council open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 12 February 2013.
Canada
In 2013, in a statement before the UN Security Council during open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of Canada stated:
We must take action to defend the rights of vulnerable religious communities in situations of armed conflict who are persecuted for their beliefs. In this regard, we strongly encourage UN agencies to better take into account the needs of persecuted religious communities, including members of the Christian community, who have been targets of persecution and forced to flee from conflicts in the Middle East. 
Canada, Statement by the permanent representative of Canada during a UN Security Council open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 19 August 2013, p. 1.
China
In 2004, in a white paper on “Progress in China’s Human Rights Cause in 2003”, China stated: “Citizens enjoy the freedom of religious belief in accordance with the law and normal religious activities are protected.” 
China, White Paper of the Government of the People’s Republic of China: Progress in China’s Human Rights Cause in 2003, March 2004.
China
In 2005, in a white paper on “China’s Progress in Human Rights in 2004”, China stated:
Citizens enjoy the freedom of religious belief in accordance with law. Religious groups, venues for religious activities, the legitimate rights and interests of religious adherents and their normal religious activities are protected by law. In 2004, the State Council promulgated China’s first comprehensive administrative regulation on religious matters – “Regulations on Religious Affairs.” It clearly defines the rights of religious groups and adherents with regards to religious activities, establishment of religious colleges and schools, publishing of religious books and periodicals, management of religious properties and foreign religious exchanges. It also regulates the administrative acts of relevant departments of the government so as to ensure that the legitimate rights and interests of religious believers, religious groups and venues for religious activities are not infringed upon. 
China, White Paper of the Government of the People’s Republic of China: China’s Progress in Human Rights in 2004, April 2005.
Croatia
In 2001, in its third periodic report to the Committee against Torture, Croatia stated: “Even in the case of a direct threat to the existence of the State, the implementation of the constitutional provisions cannot be restricted regarding … the freedoms of opinion, conscience and religion.” 
Croatia, Third periodic report to the Committee against Torture, 22 July 2002, UN Doc. CAT/C/54/Add.3, submitted 3 December 2001, § 9.
Croatia
In 2007, in its second periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, Croatia stated: “Not even in the case of an immediate threat to the existence of the State may restrictions be imposed on the application of the provisions of the Constitution concerning … freedom of thought, conscience and religion.” 
Croatia, Second periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, 2 December 2008, UN Doc. CCPR/C/HRV/2, submitted 28 November 2007, § 70; see also § 350.
Denmark
In 2006, in a report on the detention and transfer of persons in Afghanistan in 2002, Denmark’s Ministry of Defence stated:
Civilians enjoy comprehensive protection after the Fourth Geneva Convention. Article 27 states that protected persons are under all circumstances entitled to respect for … their religious convictions and practices, and their manners and customs. 
Denmark, Report on Factual and Legal Matters Relating to Danish Forces’ Detention and Transfer of Persons in Afghanistan in the First Half of 2002, Ministry of Defence, 13 December 2006, p. 4.
Finland
In 2003, in its fifth periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, Finland stated:
The Emergency Powers Act (1080/1991) requires that the basic necessities of the population, the maintenance of law and order and the protection of the territorial integrity and independence of Finland be ensured in emergency situations. Section 9 (198/2000) specifically provides that the rights protected by the Constitution or other recognised rights may only be restricted under the Emergency Powers Act to the extent it is necessary in order to control the situation … Furthermore, the freedom of religion and conscience must be respected in emergency situations. 
Finland, Fifth periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, 24 July 2003, UN Doc. CCPR/C/FIN/2003/5, submitted 17 June 2003, § 111.
Nepal
In 2004, in a declaration of commitment on the implementation of human rights and international humanitarian law, the Prime Minister of Nepal stated: “Every person shall have the right to freedom of opinion, expression and religion. Such rights shall also include right to faith in the religion of one’s choice or belief through worshipping and observance.” 
Nepal, Declaration of commitment on the implementation of human rights and international humanitarian law, 26 March 2004, § 15.
Serbia and Montenegro
In 2003, in its initial report to the Human Rights Committee, Serbia and Montenegro stated:
151. According to Article 99, paragraph 11, of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, enactments adopted during a state of war may throughout the duration of the state of war restrict various rights and freedoms of man and the citizen, except specific rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution (… freedom of belief, conscience, thought and public expression of opinion; and the freedom of religion, public or private profession of religion and performance of religious rites.
153. Pursuant to the Charter of Human and Minority Rights and Civil Liberties [of the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro, adopted in 2003], derogation from human and minority rights guaranteed by this Charter is allowed following the declaration of a state of war or a state of emergency, if the existence of the State Union or a member State is threatened, but only to the extent necessary under the given circumstances. Measures of derogation from human and minority rights cease to have effect following the end of the state of war or the state of emergency. No derogation is permitted even during the state of war or the state of emergency from … freedom of thought, conscience and religion. 
Serbia and Montenegro, Initial report to the Human Rights Committee, UN Doc. CCPR/C/SEMO/2003/1, 24 July 2003, §§ 151 and 153.
Somalia
In 2011, in its report to the Human Rights Council, Somalia stated:
Somalia has not ratified AP II [1977 Additional Protocol II] and it is therefore not directly applicable to Somalia as a matter of treaty law. The Government is aware that many provisions of AP II represent customary IHL rules and therefore apply to the situation in Somalia. Such provisions include Article 4 providing guarantees to persons taking no active part in hostilities … due to the fact that these norms are reflected in Common Article 3 of the [1949] Geneva Conventions. 
Somalia, Report to the Human Rights Council, 11 April 2011, UN Doc. A/HRC/WG.6/11/SOM/1, § 75.
Switzerland
In 2010, in its Report on IHL and Current Armed Conflicts, Switzerland’s Federal Council stated:
3.4 [Increasing use] of anti-guerrilla tactics
Apart from the direct fight against insurgents, international humanitarian law also addresses other anti-guerrilla tactics. … If members of militias or opposition groups fall into the hands of the government they benefit from the protection of art. 75 of [the 1977] Additional Protocol I as well as that of art. 3 common to the [1949] Geneva Conventions. 
Switzerland, Federal Council, Report on IHL and Current Armed Conflicts, 17 September 2010, Section 3.4, p. 15.
[footnotes in original omitted]
Syrian Arab Republic
In 2004, in its third periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, the Syrian Arab Republic stated:
61. The State of Emergency Act, which was promulgated in Legislative Decree No. 51 of 22 December 1962, as amended by Legislative Decree No. 1 of 9 March 1963, and which is currently in force in the Syrian Arab Republic, is an exceptional constitutional regime, based on the concept of an imminent threat to the country’s integrity, under which the competent authorities are empowered to take all the measures provided by law to protect the territory territorial waters and air space of the State, in whole or in part, from the dangers arising from external armed aggression by transferring some of the powers of the civil authorities to the military authorities. Article 101 of the Constitution states that the President of the Republic can declare and terminate a state of emergency in the manner stated in the law. Article 1 of this Act specifies the reasons justifying its promulgation by stipulating that a state of emergency can be proclaimed in the event of war, a situation entailing the threat of war or a situation in which security or public order in the territory of the Republic, or any part thereof, is jeopardized by internal disturbances or the occurrence of general disasters.
62. Since 1948, the Syrian Arab Republic, which was a founding member of the United Nations, has been subjected, like other neighbouring Arab States, to a real threat of war by Israel and, on many occasions, this threat of war has culminated in actual aggression against the territory, territorial waters and air space of the Syrian Arab Republic, particularly in 1967 when Israel seized part of the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic, which it is still occupying, and expelled a large proportion of its population. The latest incident of Israeli aggressions was in Ein El-Saheb on 5 October 2003.
63. This state of affairs, consisting in a real threat of war, the continued occupation of part of the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic and the existence of a real threat of seizure and ongoing occupation of further land in violation of United Nations resolutions, gave rise to an exceptional situation that necessitated the rapid and extraordinary mobilization of forces in the Syrian Arab Republic and, consequently, the promulgation of legislation to ensure the Administration’s ability to act rapidly in the face of these imminent threats when application of the ordinary legislation cannot guarantee rapid action in such circumstances. Accordingly, there was a need to promulgate this Act and maintain it in force. It should be borne in mind that all countries of the world have applied exceptional legislation, in one form or another, when they were faced with a state of war or a threat of war in order to protect their national security. This is a fundamental right recognized in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, article 4 of which stipulates that: “In time of public emergency which threatens the life of the nation and the existence of which is officially proclaimed, the States Parties to the present Covenant may take measures derogating from their obligations under the present Covenant to the extent strictly required by the exigencies of the situation”.
68. The application of the provisions of the Emergency Act in Syria does not mean in any way a suspension of the provisions of the Constitution and other laws nor a derogation from other international obligations, including obligations in which Syria has entered by virtue of bilateral or multilateral international agreements, such as provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the obligation to submit reports under article 40 of the Covenant. Furthermore, the grounds for a declaration of a state of emergency do not involve any discrimination on grounds of race, colour, gender, language, religion or social origin. The declaration of the state of emergency has not led to any violations of [inter alia, article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights] which remain[s] enforceable under the Constitution and laws, in conformity with the Covenant. 
Syrian Arab Republic, Third periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, 19 October 2004, UN Doc. CCPR/C/SYR/2004/3, submitted 5 July 2004, §§ 61–63 and 68.
United States of America
According to the Report on US Practice, “Articles 4, 5 and 6 [of the 1977 Additional protocol II] reflect general US policy on treatment of persons in the power of an adverse party in armed conflicts governed by common Article 3” of the 1949 Geneva Conventions. The report also notes: “It is the opinio juris of the US that persons detained in connection with an internal armed conflict are entitled to humane treatment as specified in Articles 4, 5 and 6 [of the 1977 Additional protocol II].” 
Report on US Practice, 1997, Chapter 5.3.
United States of America
In February 2008, in a statement on the US Department of Justice’s legal review of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) programme of detention and interrogation before the House Committee on the Judiciary Sub-Committee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, the Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel, Department of Justice, stated:
The CIA program is now operated in accordance with the President’s executive order of July 20th, 2007, which was issued pursuant to the Military Commissions Act [2006]. The President’s executive order requires that the CIA program comply with a host of substantive and procedural requirements.
… All detainees in the program must be afforded the basic necessities of life … and their treatment must be free of religious denigration … The Director of the CIA must have rules and procedures in place to ensure compliance with the executive order. 
United States, Statement by the Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel, Department of Justice, before the House Committee on the Judiciary Sub-Committee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, 14 February 2008, p. 5.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2000 on the Sudan, the UN General Assembly expressed its deep concern “at continuing violations of human rights in areas under the control of the Government of the Sudan, in particular: … restrictions on freedom of religion”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 55/116, 4 December 2000, § 2(b)(iii), voting record: 85-32-49-23.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2003 on the elimination of all forms of religious intolerance, the UN General Assembly:
Reaffirming the call, made ten years ago in Vienna at the World Conference on Human Rights, for all Governments to take all appropriate measures in compliance with their international obligations and with due regard to their respective legal systems to counter intolerance and related violence based on religion or belief, including practices of discrimination against women and the desecration of religious sites, recognizing that every individual has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, expression and religion,
1. Reaffirms that freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief is a human right derived from the inherent dignity of the human person and guaranteed to all without discrimination;
2. Urges States to ensure that their constitutional and legal systems provide effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, including the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief is violated;
6. Emphasizes that, as underlined by the Human Rights Committee, restrictions on the freedom to manifest religion or belief are permitted only if those limitations that are prescribed by law are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals, or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others, and are applied in a manner that does not vitiate the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion;
7. Urges States to ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief and to ensure that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided;
8. Calls upon all States to recognize, as provided in the Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief, the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for those purposes. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 58/184, 22 December 2003, preamble and §§ 1–2 and 6–8, voting record: 179-0-1-11.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2004 on emergency international assistance for peace, normalcy and reconstruction of war-stricken Afghanistan, the UN General Assembly:
Emphasizes again the necessity of investigating allegations of current and past violations of human rights and of international humanitarian law, including violations committed against persons belonging to ethnic and religious minorities, as well as against women and girls, of facilitating the provision of efficient and effective remedies to the victims and of bringing the perpetrators to justice in accordance with international law. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 59/112 B, 8 December 2004, § 8, adopted without a vote.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2004 on the elimination of all forms of religious intolerance, the UN General Assembly:
Reaffirming the call, made eleven years ago in Vienna at the World Conference on Human Rights, for all Governments to take all appropriate measures in compliance with their international obligations and with due regard to their respective legal systems to counter intolerance and related violence based on religion or belief, including practices of discrimination against women and the desecration of religious sites, recognizing that every individual has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, expression and religion,
1. Reaffirms that freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief is a human right derived from the inherent dignity of the human person and guaranteed to all without discrimination;
2. Urges States to ensure that their constitutional and legal systems provide effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, including the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief is violated;
6. Emphasizes that, as underlined by the Human Rights Committee, restrictions on the freedom to manifest religion or belief are permitted only if those limitations that are prescribed by law are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals, or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others, and are applied in a manner that does not vitiate the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion;
7. Urges States to ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief and to ensure that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided;
8. Calls upon all States to recognize, as provided in the Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief, the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for those purposes. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 59/199, 20 December 2004, preamble and §§ 1–2 and 6–8, voting record: 186-0-0-5.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2005 on emergency international assistance for peace, normalcy and reconstruction of war-stricken Afghanistan, the UN General Assembly stressed “the need to ensure respect for the right to freedom of expression and the right to freedom of thought, conscience or belief”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 60/32 B, 30 November 2005, § 9, adopted without a vote.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2005 on combating defamation of religions, the UN General Assembly:
Urges all States to ensure that all public officials, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military, civil servants and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 60/150, 16 December 2005, § 11, voting record: 101-53-20-17.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2005 on the elimination of all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief, the UN General Assembly:
Reaffirming the call of the World Conference on Human Rights upon all Governments to take all appropriate measures in compliance with their international obligations and with due regard to their respective legal systems to counter intolerance and related violence based on religion or belief, including practices of discrimination against women and the desecration of religious sites, recognizing that every individual has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, expression and religion,
4. Urges States:
(a) To ensure that their constitutional and legislative systems provide adequate and effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief to all without distinction, inter alia, by the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, or the right to practise freely one’s religion, including the right to change one’s religion or belief, is violated;
(c) To review, whenever relevant, existing registration practices in order to ensure the right of all persons to manifest their religion or belief, alone or in community with others and in public or in private;
(d) To ensure, in particular, the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes and the right of all persons to write, issue and disseminate relevant publications in these areas;
(g) To ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 60/166, 16 December 2005, preamble and § 4 (a), (c)–(d) and (g), adopted without a vote.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2006 on the situation in Afghanistan, the UN General Assembly noted with concern “reports of continued violations of human rights and of international humanitarian law and violent or discriminatory practices, in particular against women and girls, in certain parts of the country” and stressed “the need for adherence to international standards of tolerance and religious freedom”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 61/18, 28 November 2006, preamble, adopted without a vote.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2006 on the elimination of all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief, the UN General Assembly:
Reaffirming the call of the World Conference on Human Rights upon all Governments to take all appropriate measures in compliance with their international obligations and with due regard to their respective legal systems to counter intolerance and related violence based on religion or belief, including practices of discrimination against women and the desecration of religious sites, recognizing that every individual has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, expression and religion,
4. Urges States:
(a) To ensure that their constitutional and legislative systems provide adequate and effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief to all without distinction, inter alia, by the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, or the right to practise freely one’s religion, including the right to change one’s religion or belief, is violated;
(c) To review, whenever relevant, existing registration practices in order to ensure the right of all persons to manifest their religion or belief, alone or in community with others and in public or in private;
(d) To ensure, in particular, the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes and the right of all persons to write, issue and disseminate relevant publications in these areas;
(g) To ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 61/161, 19 December 2006, preamble and § 4 (a), (c)–(d) and (g), adopted without a vote.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2006 on combating defamation of religions, the UN General Assembly:
Urges all States to ensure that all public officials, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military, civil servants and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate against persons on the grounds of their religion or belief, and that necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 61/164, 19 December 2006, § 12, voting record: 111-54-18-9.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on the situation in Afghanistan, the UN General Assembly:
Noting with concern reports of continued violations of human rights and of international humanitarian law and violent or discriminatory practices including “honour killings” in certain parts of the country, particularly targeting women and girls, and stressing the need for adherence to international standards of tolerance and religious freedom and for judicial investigation and prosecution of relevant cases. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 62/6, 11 November 2007, preamble, adopted without a vote.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on Jerusalem, the UN General Assembly:
Stresses that a comprehensive, just and lasting solution to the question of the City of Jerusalem should take into account the legitimate concerns of both the Palestinian and Israeli sides and should include internationally guaranteed provisions to ensure the freedom of religion and of conscience of its inhabitants, as well as permanent, free and unhindered access to the holy places by the people of all religions and nationalities. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 62/84, 10 December 2007, § 3, voting record: 160-6-7-19.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on the promotion of interreligious and intercultural dialogue, understanding and cooperation for peace, the UN General Assembly:
Reaffirming the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, in particular the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion,
3. Reaffirms the solemn commitment of all States to fulfil their obligations to promote universal respect for, and observance and protection of, all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other instruments relating to human rights and international law, the universal nature of these rights and freedoms being beyond question. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 62/90, 17 December 2007, preamble and § 3, adopted without a vote.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on combating defamation of religions, the UN General Assembly:
Urges all States to ensure that all public officials, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military, civil servants and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect people regardless of their different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate against persons on the grounds of their religion or belief, and that any necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 62/154, 18 December 2007, § 13, voting record: 108-51-25-8.
UN General Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on the elimination of all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief, the UN General Assembly:
Considering that religion or belief, for those who profess either, is one of the fundamental elements in their conception of life and that freedom of religion or belief should be fully respected and guaranteed,
2. Stresses that the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion applies equally to all people, regardless of their religions or beliefs, and without any discrimination as to their equal protection by the law;
3. Emphasizes that, as underlined by the Human Rights Committee, restrictions on the freedom to manifest religion or belief are permitted only if limitations are prescribed by law, are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals, or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others, and are applied in a manner that does not vitiate the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion;
5. Recognizes with concern the situation of persons in vulnerable situations, including refugees, asylum-seekers and internally displaced persons, as regards their ability freely to exercise their right to freedom of religion or belief;
10. Urges States to step up their efforts to eliminate intolerance and discrimination based on religion or belief, and to this end:
(a) To ensure that their constitutional and legislative systems provide adequate and effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief to all without distinction, inter alia, by the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, or the right to practise freely one’s religion, including the right to change one’s religion or belief, is violated;
(c) To ensure, in particular, the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes and the right of all persons to write, issue and disseminate relevant publications in these areas;
(d) To ensure that, in accordance with appropriate national legislation and in conformity with international human rights law, the freedom of all persons and members of groups to establish and maintain religious, charitable or humanitarian institutions is fully respected and protected;
(e) To ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 62/157, 18 December 2007, preamble and §§ 2–3, 5 and 10(a) and (c)–(e), adopted without a vote.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1977 on the question of the violation of human rights in the territories occupied as a result of hostilities in the Middle East, the UN Commission on Human Rights, guided inter alia by the 1949 Geneva Convention IV, condemned certain Israeli policies and practices in the occupied territories, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1 (XXXIII) A, 15 February 1977, § 4(k), voting record: 23-3-6.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1978 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, condemned certain Israeli policies and practices in the occupied territories, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1 (XXXIV) A, 14 February 1978, § 4(i), voting record: 23-3-7.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1979 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, condemned certain Israeli policies and practices in the occupied territories, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1 (XXXV) A, 21 February 1979, § 3(i), voting record: 20-2-9.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1980 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, condemned certain Israeli policies and practices in the occupied territories, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1 (XXXVI) A, 13 February 1980, § 3(h), voting record: 28-3-8.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1981 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, condemned certain Israeli policies and practices in the occupied territories, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1 (XXXVII) A, 11 February 1981, § 7(i), voting record: 31-3-8.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1982 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, strongly condemned certain Israeli practices in the occupied territories, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1982/1 A, 11 February 1982, § 5(i), voting record: 32-7-7.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1983 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, strongly condemned certain Israeli practices in the occupied territories, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1983/1 A, 15 February 1983, § 5(i), voting record: 29-1-13.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1984 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, strongly condemned certain Israeli practices, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1984/1 A, 20 February 1984, § 7(j), voting record: 29-1-11.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1985 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, strongly condemned certain Israeli practices, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1985/1 A, 19 February 1985, § 8(j), voting record: 28-5-8.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1986 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “other relevant conventions and regulations”, strongly condemned certain Israeli practices in the occupied territories, including “[t]he interference with religious freedoms and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1986/1 A, 20 February 1986, § 8(j), voting record: 29-7-6.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1987 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “the principles of international humanitarian law”, strongly condemned certain Israeli practices in the occupied territories, including “hindering religious freedom and practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1987/2 A, 19 February 1987, § 8(d), voting record: 28-8-6.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1988 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, bearing in mind the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and “the principles of international humanitarian law” condemned “the obstruction of religious freedoms and practices and the act of opening fire on worshippers, wounding dozens of them in Al Aqsa Mosque, for example, on 15 January 1988”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1988/1 A, 15 February 1988, § 7, voting record: 31-8-4.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1989 on the question of violations of human rights in occupied Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights, taking into consideration the 1907 Hague Regulations and the 1949 Geneva Convention IV, condemned Israel “for obstructing the freedom of worship and religious practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1989/2 A, 17 February 1989, § 4(d), voting record: 32-8-2.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1996, the UN Commission on Human Rights expressed serious concern about reports of religious persecution and forced conversion in the government-controlled areas of Sudan. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1996/73, 23 April 1996, preamble, adopted without a vote.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2001 on the elimination of all forms of religious intolerance, the UN Commission on Human Rights condemned “all forms of intolerance [and] discrimination based on religion or belief” and urged States “to recognize the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2001/42, 23 April 2001, §§ 2 and 4(d), adopted without a vote.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2003 on combating defamation of religions, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Alarmed at the serious instances of intolerance, discrimination and acts of violence based on religion or belief, intimidation and coercion motivated by extremism, religious or otherwise, occurring in many parts of the world and threatening the enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms,
7. Urges all States, within their national legal framework, in conformity with international human rights instruments, to take all appropriate measures to combat hatred, discrimination, intolerance and acts of violence, intimidation and coercion motivated by religious intolerance, including attacks on religious places, and to encourage understanding, tolerance and respect in matters relating to freedom of religion or belief;
8. Also urges all States to ensure that all public officials, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military, civil servants and educators, in the course of their official duties respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that necessary and appropriate education or training is provided;
10. Encourages States, within their respective constitutional systems, to provide adequate protection against all human rights violations resulting from defamation of religions and to take all possible measures to promote tolerance and respect for all religions and their value systems. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2003/4, 14 April 2003, preamble and §§ 7– 8 and 10, voting record: 32-14-7.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2003 on the elimination of all forms of religious intolerance, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Reaffirming the call, made 10 years ago in Vienna by the World Conference on Human Rights, upon all Governments to take all appropriate measures in compliance with their international obligations and with due regard to their respective legal systems to counter intolerance and related violence based on religion or belief, including practices of discrimination against women and the desecration of religious sites, recognizing that every individual has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, expression and religion,
Emphasizing that the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief is far-reaching and profound and that it encompasses freedom of thought on all matters, personal conviction and the commitment to religion or belief, whether manifested individually or in community with others, in public or in private,
Alarmed that serious instances of intolerance and discrimination on the grounds of religion or belief, including acts of violence, intimidation and coercion motivated by religious intolerance, continue to occur in many parts of the world and threaten the enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms,
Deeply concerned at the overall rise in intolerance and discrimination, including acts of violence, against persons belonging to religious minorities in all parts of the world, including restrictive legislation and arbitrary application of legislation and other measures,
Concerned also at the rise in religious extremism affecting religions in all parts of the world,
Recognizing with deep concern the overall rise in instances of intolerance directed against members of many religious communities in various parts of the world, including cases motivated by Islamophobia and anti-Semitism,
Believing that further intensified efforts are therefore required to promote and protect the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief and to eliminate all forms of hatred, intolerance and discrimination based on religion or belief,
2. Condemns all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief;
4. Urges States:
(a) To ensure that their constitutional and legislative systems provide adequate and effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief to all without distinction, inter alia by the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, the right to practise freely one’s religion, including the right to change one’s religion or belief, is violated;
(c) In conformity with international human rights standards, to take all necessary action to combat hatred, intolerance and acts of violence, intimidation and coercion motivated by intolerance based on religion or belief, with particular regard to religious minorities, and also to devote particular attention to practices which violate the human rights of women and discriminate against women including in the exercise of their right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief;
(d) To recognize the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes;
(f) To ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided;
5. Emphasizes that, as underlined by the Human Rights Committee, restrictions on the freedom to manifest religion or belief are permitted only if limitations are prescribed by law, are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals, or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others, and are applied in a manner that does not vitiate the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2003/54, 24 April 2003, preamble and §§ 2, 4(a), (c)–(d) and (f) and 5, voting record: 51-0-2.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2004 on combating defamation of religions, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Alarmed at the serious instances of intolerance, discrimination and acts of violence based on religion or belief, intimidation and coercion motivated by extremism, religious or otherwise, occurring in many parts of the world and threatening the enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms,
9. Urges all States, within their national legal framework, in conformity with international human rights instruments, to take all appropriate measures to combat hatred, discrimination, intolerance and acts of violence, intimidation and coercion motivated by religious intolerance, including attacks on religious places, and to encourage understanding, tolerance and respect in matters relating to freedom of religion or belief;
10. Also urges all States to ensure that all public officials, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military, civil servants and educators, in the course of their official duties respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2004/6, 13 April 2004, preamble and §§ 9–10, voting record: 29-16-7.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2004 on conscientious objection to military service, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Recalling all its previous resolutions on the subject, in particular resolution 1998/77 of 22 April 1998, in which the Commission recognized the right of everyone to have conscientious objection to military service as a legitimate exercise of the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, as laid down in article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and general comment No. 22 (1993) of the Human Rights Committee,
1. Takes note of the compilation and analysis of best practices in relation to the recognition of the right of everyone to have conscientious objection to military service as a legitimate exercise of the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, and the provision of alternative forms of service contained in the report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (E/CN.4/2004/55);
3. Calls upon States that have not yet done so to review their current laws and practices in relation to conscientious objection to military service in the light of its resolution 1998/77, taking account of the information contained in the report;
4. Encourages States, as part of postconflict peacebuilding, to consider granting, and effectively implementing, amnesties and restitution of rights, in law and practice, for those who have refused to undertake military service on grounds of conscientious objection. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2004/35, 19 April 2004, preamble and §§ 1 and 3–4, adopted without a vote.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2004 on the elimination of all forms of religious intolerance, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Recalling further article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, paragraph 4 of the United Nations Millennium Declaration and other relevant human rights provisions,
Reaffirming the call of the World Conference on Human Rights upon all Governments to take all appropriate measures in compliance with their international obligations and with due regard to their respective legal systems to counter intolerance and related violence based on religion or belief, including practices of discrimination against women and the desecration of religious sites, recognizing that every individual has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, expression and religion,
Emphasizing that the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief is farreaching and profound and that it encompasses freedom of thought on all matters, personal conviction and the commitment to religion or belief, whether manifested individually or in community with others, in public or in private,
Alarmed that serious instances of intolerance and discrimination on the grounds of religion or belief, including acts of violence, intimidation and coercion motivated by religious intolerance, occur in many parts of the world and threaten the enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms,
Deeply concerned at the overall rise in intolerance and discrimination, including acts of violence, against persons belonging to religious minorities in all parts of the world, including restrictive legislation and arbitrary application of legislation and other measures,
Recognizing with deep concern the overall rise in instances of intolerance directed against members of many religious communities in various parts of the world, including cases motivated by Islamophobia, antiSemitism and Christianophobia,
Believing that further intensified efforts are therefore required to promote and protect the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief and to eliminate all forms of hatred, intolerance and discrimination based on religion or belief, as also noted at the World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance,
2. Condemns all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief;
4. Urges States:
(a) To ensure that their constitutional and legislative systems provide adequate and effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief to all without distinction, inter alia by the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, the right to practise freely one’s religion, including the right to change one’s religion or belief, is violated;
(b) To ensure, in particular, that no one within their jurisdiction is deprived of the right to life or the right to liberty and security of person because of religion or belief, or is subjected to torture or arbitrary arrest or detention on that account, and to bring to justice all perpetrators of violations of these rights;
(c) In conformity with international human rights standards, to take all necessary action to combat hatred, intolerance and acts of violence, intimidation and coercion motivated by intolerance based on religion or belief, with particular regard to religious minorities, and also to devote particular attention to practices which violate the human rights of women and discriminate against women including in the exercise of their right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief;
(d) To recognize the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes;
(f) To ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided;
5. Emphasizes that, as underlined by the Human Rights Committee, restrictions on the freedom to manifest religion or belief are permitted only if limitations are prescribed by law, are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals, or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others, and are applied in a manner that does not vitiate the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2004/36, 19 April 2004, preamble and §§ 2, 4(a)–(d) and (f) and 5, adopted without a vote.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2005 on combating defamation of religions, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Alarmed … at the serious instances of intolerance, discrimination and acts of violence based on religion or belief, intimidation and coercion motivated by extremism, religious or otherwise, occurring in many parts of the world and threatening the enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms,
9. Urges States to take resolute action to prohibit the dissemination through political institutions and organizations of racist and xenophobic ideas and material aimed at any religion or its followers that constitute incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence;
10. Also urges States to provide, within their respective legal and constitutional systems, adequate protection against acts of hatred, discrimination, intimidation and coercion resulting from defamation of religions, to take all possible measures to promote tolerance and respect for all religions and their value systems, and to complement legal systems with intellectual and moral strategies to combat religious hatred and intolerance;
11. Urges all States to ensure that all public officials, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military, civil servants and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2005/3, 12 April 2005, preamble and §§ 9–11, voting record: 31-16-5.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2005 on the elimination of all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Recalling also article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other relevant human rights provisions,
Reaffirming the call of the World Conference on Human Rights upon all Governments to take all appropriate measures in compliance with their international obligations and with due regard to their respective legal systems to counter intolerance and related violence based on religion or belief, including practices of discrimination against women and the desecration of religious sites, recognizing that every individual has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, expression and religion,
Seriously concerned at all attacks upon religious places, sites and shrines, including any deliberate destruction of relics and monuments,
2. Condemns all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief;
4. Urges States:
(a) To ensure that their constitutional and legislative systems provide adequate and effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief to all without distinction, inter alia by the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, the right to practise freely one’s religion, including the right to change one’s religion or belief, is violated;
(b) To exert the utmost efforts, in accordance with their national legislation and in conformity with international human rights law, to ensure that religious places, sites, shrines and religious expressions are fully respected and protected and to take additional measures in cases where they are vulnerable to desecration or destruction;
(c) To review, whenever relevant, existing registration practices in order to ensure the right of all persons to manifest their religion or belief, alone or in community with others and in public or in private;
(d) To ensure, in particular, the right of all persons to worship or assemble in connection with a religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes, as well as the right of all persons to write, issue and disseminate relevant publications in these areas, taking into account the limitations contained in article 29 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights;
(e) To ensure that, in accordance with appropriate national legislation and in conformity with international human rights law, the freedom for all persons and members of groups to establish and maintain religious, charitable or humanitarian institutions is fully respected and protected;
(f) To ensure that no one within their jurisdiction is deprived of the right to life, liberty, or security of person because of religion or belief and that no one is subjected to torture or arbitrary arrest or detention on that account, and to bring to justice all perpetrators of violations of these rights;
(g) To ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided;
12. Further emphasizes that, as underlined by the Human Rights Committee, restrictions on the freedom to manifest religion or belief are permitted only if limitations are prescribed by law, are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals, or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others, and are applied in a manner that does not vitiate the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2005/40, 19 April 2005, preamble and §§ 2, 4 and 12, adopted without a vote.
UN Human Rights Council
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on combating defamation of religions, the UN Human Rights Council:
Urges all States to ensure that all public officials, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military, civil servants and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate against persons on the grounds of their religion or belief, and that any necessary and appropriate education or training is provided. 
UN Human Rights Council, Res. 4/9, 30 March 2007, § 9, voting record: 24-14-9.
UN Human Rights Council
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on the elimination of all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief, the UN Human Rights Council stated that “freedom of religion or belief should be fully respected and guaranteed”. 
UN Human Rights Council, Res. 4/10, 30 March 2007, preamble, adopted without a vote.
UN Human Rights Council
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on religious and cultural rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, the UN Human Rights Council:
Recalling the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights,
Recalling also article 2 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which stipulates that everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in that Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status, and that no distinction should be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty,
Recalling relevant Security Council resolutions on Occupied East Jerusalem,
Affirming the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, to the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem,
1. Stresses that all policies and measures taken by Israel, the occupying Power, to limit access of Palestinians to their holy sites, particularly in Occupied East Jerusalem, on the basis of national origin, religion, birth, sex or any other status are in violation of the provisions of the above-mentioned instruments and resolutions and therefore must cease immediately;
2. Calls upon Israel, the occupying Power, to respect the religious and cultural rights enumerated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and to allow Palestinian worshippers unfettered access to their religious sites. 
UN Human Rights Council, Res. 6/19, 28 September 2007, preamble and §§ 1–2, voting record: 31-1-15.
UN Human Rights Council
In a resolution adopted in 2007 on the elimination of all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief, the UN Human Rights Council:
1. Condemns all forms of intolerance and of discrimination based on religion or belief as well as violations of the freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief;
9. Urges States:
(a) To ensure that their constitutional and legislative systems provide adequate and effective guarantees of freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief to all without distinction, inter alia, by the provision of effective remedies in cases where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, or the right to practice freely one’s religion, including the right to change one’s religion or belief, is violated;
(c) To ensure that appropriate measures are taken in order to adequately and effectively guarantee the freedom of religion or belief of women as well as individuals from other vulnerable groups, including persons deprived of their liberty, refugees, children, persons belonging to minorities and migrants;
(e) To exert the utmost efforts, in accordance with their national legislation and in conformity with international human rights and humanitarian law, to ensure that religious places, sites, shrines and symbols are fully respected and protected and to take additional measures in cases where they are vulnerable to desecration or destruction;
(i) To ensure that, on account of religion or belief or the expression or manifestation of religion or belief, no one within their jurisdiction is deprived of the right to life, liberty or security of person, subjected to torture or arbitrary arrest or detention, or denied the rights to work, education or adequate housing, as well as the right to seek asylum, and to bring to justice all perpetrators of violations of these rights;
(j) To ensure that all public officials and civil servants, including members of law enforcement bodies, the military and educators, in the course of their official duties, respect different religions and beliefs and do not discriminate on the grounds of religion or belief, and that all necessary and appropriate education or training is provided;
14. Further emphasizes that, as underlined by the Human Rights Committee, restrictions on the freedom to manifest religion or belief are permitted only if limitations are prescribed by law, are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals, or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others, and are applied in a manner that does not vitiate the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. 
UN Human Rights Council, Res. 6/37, 14 December 2007, §§ 1, 9(a), (c), (e) and (i)–(j) and 14, voting record: 29-0-18.
UN Secretary-General
In 2000, in his report on the establishment of a Special Court for Sierra Leone, the UN Secretary-General stated that common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions and Article 4 of the 1977 Additional Protocol II “have long been considered customary international law”. 
UN Secretary-General, Report on the establishment of a Special Court for Sierra Leone, UN Doc. S/2000/915, 4 October 2000, § 14.
UN Commission on Human Rights (Special Rapporteur)
In a report in 1993, the Special Rapporteur of the UN Commission on Human Rights on the Implementation of the Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief stated:
The Special Rapporteur has continued to receive allegations of infringements in most regions of the world of the rights and freedoms contained in the Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief. Practices of religious intolerance have continued to occur in countries with varying degrees of development and different political and social systems and have not been confined to a particular faith.  
UN Commission on Human Rights, Special Rapporteur on the Implementation of the Declaration on the Elimination of all Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief, Report, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1993/62, 6 January 1993, § 74; see also Report, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1987/35, 24 December 1986; Report, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1988/45, 6 January 1988; Report, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1989/44, 30 December 1988; Report, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1990/46, 22 January 1990; Report, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1991/56, 18 January 1991 and Report, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1992/52, 18 December 1991.
No data.
No data.
Human Rights Committee
In its General Comment on Article 18 of the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights in 1993, the Human Rights Committee stated:
The right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion (which includes the freedom to hold beliefs) in article 18.1 is far-reaching and profound; it encompasses freedom of thought on all matters, personal conviction and the commitment to religion or belief, whether manifested individually or in community with others. The Committee draws the attention of States parties to the fact that the freedom of thought and the freedom of conscience are protected equally with the freedom of religion and belief. The fundamental character of these freedoms is also reflected in the fact that this provision cannot be derogated from, even in time of public emergency, as stated in article 4.2 of the Covenant. 
Human Rights Committee, General Comment No. 22 (Article 18 of the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights), 30 July 1993, § 1.
Human Rights Committee
In its concluding observations on the fourth periodic report of Yemen in 2005, the Human Rights Committee stated:
The Committee reiterates its concern about the prohibition of Muslims converting to another religion, in the name of social stability and security. Such a prohibition is in violation of article 18 of the [1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights], which does not permit any limitations whatsoever on the freedom of thought and conscience or on the freedom to have or adopt a religion or belief of one’s choice, and of article 26, which prohibits discrimination on the ground of religion.
The State party should review its position and take all necessary measures to ensure the freedom of all persons to choose a religion or belief, including the right to change ones current religion or belief. 
Human Rights Committee, Concluding observations on the fourth periodic report of Yemen, UN Doc. CCPR/CO/84/YEM, 9 August 2005, § 18.
[emphasis in original]
Human Rights Committee
In Malakhovsky and Pikul v. Belarus in 2005, the Human Rights Committee held:
7.2 In relation to the authors’ claim under article 18, paragraphs 1 and 3 [of the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights], the Committee recalls its General Comment No 22, which states that article 18 does not permit any limitation whatsoever on freedom of thought and conscience or on the freedom to have or adopt a religion or belief of one’s choice. By contrast, the right to freedom to manifest one’s religion or beliefs may be subject to certain limitations, but only those prescribed by law and necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others. Further, the right to freedom to manifest one’s beliefs in worship, observance, practice and teaching encompasses a broad range of acts, including those integral to the conduct by the religious group of its basic affairs, such as the freedom to choose religious leaders, priests, and teachers, and the freedom to establish seminaries or religious schools …
7.3 … The Committee recalls its General Comment No 22, which states that paragraph 3 of article 18 is to be interpreted strictly, and that limitations may only be applied for those purposes for which they are prescribed and must be directly related to and proportionate to the specific need on which they are predicated. 
Human Rights Committee, Malakhovsky and Pikul v. Belarus, Views, 23 August 2005, §§ 7.2–7.3.
[emphasis in original]
Human Rights Committee
In Yoon and Choi v. Republic of Korea in 2006, the Human Rights Committee held:
8.3 The Committee recalls its previous jurisprudence on the assessment of a claim of conscientious objection to military service as a protected form of manifestation of religious belief under article 18, paragraph 1[, of the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights]. It observes that while the right to manifest one’s religion or belief does not as such imply the right to refuse all obligations imposed by law, it provides certain protection, consistent with article 18, paragraph 3, against being forced to act against genuinely-held religious belief. The Committee also recalls its general view expressed in General Comment 22 that to compel a person to use lethal force, although such use would seriously conflict with the requirements of his conscience or religious beliefs, falls within the ambit of article 18. The Committee notes, in the instant case, that the authors’ refusal to be drafted for compulsory service was a direct expression of their religious beliefs, which it is uncontested were genuinely held. The authors’ conviction and sentence, accordingly, amounts to a restriction on their ability to manifest their religion or belief. Such restriction must be justified by the permissible limits described in paragraph 3 of article 18, that is, that any restriction must be prescribed by law and be necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others. However, such restriction must not impair the very essence of the right in question.
8.4 The Committee notes that under the laws of the State party there is no procedure for recognition of conscientious objections against military service. The State party argues that this restriction is necessary for public safety, in order to maintain its national defensive capacities and to preserve social cohesion. The Committee takes note of the State party’s argument on the particular context of its national security, as well as of its intention to act on the national action plan for conscientious objection devised by the National Human Rights Commission … The Committee also notes, in relation to relevant State practice, that an increasing number of those States parties to the Covenant which have retained compulsory military service have introduced alternatives to compulsory military service, and considers that the State party has failed to show what special disadvantage would be involved for it if the rights of the authors’ under article 18 would be fully respected. As to the issue of social cohesion and equitability, the Committee considers that respect on the part of the State for conscientious beliefs and manifestations thereof is itself an important factor in ensuring cohesive and stable pluralism in society. It likewise observes that it is in principle possible, and in practice common, to conceive alternatives to compulsory military service that do not erode the basis of the principle of universal conscription but render equivalent social good and make equivalent demands on the individual, eliminating unfair disparities between those engaged in compulsory military service and those in alternative service. The Committee, therefore, considers that the State party has not demonstrated that in the present case the restriction in question is necessary, within the meaning of article 18, paragraph 3, of the Covenant.
9. The Human Rights Committee, acting under article 5, paragraph 4, of the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, concludes that the facts as found by the Committee reveal, in respect of each author violations by the Republic of Korea of article 18, paragraph 1, of the Covenant. 
Human Rights Committee, Yoon and Choi v. Republic of Korea, Views, 23 January 2007, §§ 8.3–9.
African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights
In 1999, in the case of the Association of Members of the Episcopal Conference of East Africa v. Sudan, the African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights stated:
73. Another matter is the application of Shari’a law. There is no controversy as to Shari’a being based upon the interpretation of the Muslim religion. When Sudanese tribunals apply Shari’a, they must do so in accordance with the other obligations undertaken by the State of Sudan. Trials must always accord with international fair-trial standards. Also, it is fundamentally unjust that religious laws should be applied against non-adherents of the religion. Tribunals that apply only Shari’a are thus not competent to judge non-Muslims, and everyone should have the right to be tried by a secular court if they wish.
74. It is alleged that non-Muslims were persecuted in order to cause their conversion to Islam. They do not have the right to preach or build their Churches; there are restrictions on freedom of expression in the national press. Members of the Christian clergy are harassed; Christians are subjected to arbitrary arrests, expulsions and denial of access to work and food aid.
75. In its various oral and written submissions to the African Commission, the government has not responded in any convincing manner to all the allegations of human [sic] made against it. The Commission reiterates the principle that in such cases where the government does not respect its obligation to provide the Commission with a response on the allegations of which it is notified, it shall consider the facts probable.
76. Other allegations refer to the oppression of Christian civilians and religious leaders and the expulsion of missionaries. It is alleged that non-Muslims suffer persecution in the form of denial of work, food aid and education. A serious allegation is that of unequal food distribution in prisons, subjecting Christian prisoners to blackmail in order obtain food. These attacks on individuals on account of their religious persuasion considerably restrict their ability to practice freely the religion to which they subscribe. The government provides no evidence or justifications that would mitigate this conclusion. Accordingly, the Commission holds a violation of Article 8 [of the 1981 African Charter for Human and Peoples’ Rights]. 
African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights, Association of Members of the Episcopal Conference of East Africa v. Sudan, Decision, 1–15 November 1999, §§ 73–76.
European Court of Human Rights
In its judgment in Kokkinakis v. Greece in 1993, the European Court of Human Rights stated:
31. As enshrined in Article 9 (art. 9) [of the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights], freedom of thought, conscience and religion is one of the foundations of a “democratic society” within the meaning of the Convention. It is, in its religious dimension, one of the most vital elements that go to make up the identity of believers and their conception of life, but it is also a precious asset for atheists, agnostics, sceptics and the unconcerned. The pluralism indissociable from a democratic society, which has been dearly won over the centuries, depends on it.
While religious freedom is primarily a matter of individual conscience, it also implies, inter alia, freedom to “manifest [one’s] religion”. Bearing witness in words and deeds is bound up with the existence of religious convictions.
According to Article 9 (art. 9), freedom to manifest one’s religion is not only exercisable in community with others, “in public” and within the circle of those whose faith one shares, but can also be asserted “alone” and “in private”; furthermore, it includes in principle the right to try to convince one’s neighbour, for example through “teaching”, failing which, moreover, “freedom to change [one’s] religion or belief”, enshrined in Article 9 (art. 9), would be likely to remain a dead letter. 
European Court of Human Rights, Kokkinakis v. Greece, Judgment, 25 May 1993, § 31.
European Court of Human Rights
In its judgment in the Cyprus case in 2001, the European Court of Human Rights found, in relation to the living conditions of Greek Cypriots in the Karpas region of northern Cyprus, that there had been a violation of Article 9 of the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights (freedom of thought, conscience and religion) in respect of Greek Cypriots concerning the effects of restrictions on freedom of movement, which limited access to places of worship and participation in other aspects of religious life. 
European Court of Human Rights, Cyprus case, Judgment, 10 May 2001, §§ 245–246.
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1968 on the law applicable to emergency situations, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights declared:
The suspension of constitutional guarantees or state of siege is compatible with the system of representative democratic government only if enacted under the following conditions:
e. When it does not in any manner presuppose the suspension of … the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. 
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Resolution adopted at the 1968 Session, Doc. OEA/Ser.L/V/II.19 Doc. 32, Inter-American Yearbook on Human Rights, 1968, pp. 59–61.
ICRC
To fulfil its task of disseminating IHL, the ICRC has delegates around the world teaching armed and security forces that: “The person and the person’s honour, convictions and religious practices shall be respected.” 
Frédéric de Mulinen, Handbook on the Law of War for Armed Forces, ICRC, Geneva, 1987, § 188.
Delegates also teach that in occupied territories “the religious convictions and practices of the inhabitants must be respected. Religious personnel shall be permitted to give spiritual assistance to the members of their religious communities with the aid of the occupying power.” 
Frédéric de Mulinen, Handbook on the Law of War for Armed Forces, ICRC, Geneva, 1987, § 824.
National Society (Mexico)
In a declaration issued in 1994 in the context of the conflict between the Mexican Government and the Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional (EZLN), the Mexican Red Cross recalled the 1949 Geneva Conventions and the 1977 Additional Protocol I and reminded the parties of their obligation to respect the beliefs of combatants and civilians. 
Mexican Red Cross, Declaración en torno a los acontecimientos que se han presentado en el estado de Chiapas a partir del 1o. de Enero de 1994, 3 January 1994.
ICRC
In a communication to the press issued in 2000 in connection with the hostilities in the Near East, the ICRC recalled that “religious customs must be respected, which implies access to places of worship to the fullest extent possible”. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 00/42, ICRC appeal to all involved in violence in the Near East, 21 November 2000.
International Institute of Humanitarian Law
A colloquium held jointly by the International Institute of Humanitarian Law and the International Institute of Human Rights in 1973 adopted a resolution on spiritual and intellectual assistance in time of armed conflict and civil disturbances. The resolution appealed to any party involved in an international or non-international armed conflict to respect the right of any victim of an armed conflict to exercise his or her spiritual and intellectual activities and to supply him or her with the facilities necessary therefor, as well as to refrain from controlling such activities in a manner incompatible with respect for beliefs and convictions, or from practising methods of information, training or teaching which were incompatible with freedom of thought and the principles of humanitarian law. It also invited all States to ratify the universal and regional instruments asserting the right to freedom of thought, conviction and religion, and to apply the provisions of those instruments in all circumstances, including during international and non-international conflicts, and in situations of internal tension. 
International Institute of Humanitarian Law/International Institute of Human Rights, Colloquium on Spiritual and Intellectual Assistance in Time of Armed Conflicts and Civil Disturbances, IRRC, No. 152, 1973, p. 609.
International Institute of Human Rights
A colloquium held jointly by the International Institute of Human Rights and the International Institute of Humanitarian Law in 1973 adopted a resolution on spiritual and intellectual assistance in time of armed conflict and civil disturbances. The resolution appealed to any party involved in an international or non-international armed conflict to respect the right of any victim of an armed conflict to exercise his or her spiritual and intellectual activities and to supply him or her with the facilities necessary therefor, as well as to refrain from controlling such activities in a manner incompatible with respect for beliefs and convictions, or from practising methods of information, training or teaching which were incompatible with freedom of thought and the principles of humanitarian law. It also invited all States to ratify the universal and regional instruments asserting the right to freedom of thought, conviction and religion, and to apply the provisions of those instruments in all circumstances, including during international and non-international conflicts, and in situations of internal tension. 
International Institute of Human Rights/International Institute of Humanitarian Law, Colloquium on Spiritual and Intellectual Assistance in Time of Armed Conflicts and Civil Disturbances, IRRC, No. 152, 1973, p. 609.
Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards
The Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards, adopted by an expert meeting convened by the Institute for Human Rights of Åbo Akademi University in Turku/Åbo, Finland in 1990, states: “All persons, even if their liberty has been restricted, are entitled to respect for their person, honour and convictions, freedom of thought, conscience and religious practices.” 
Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards, adopted by an expert meeting convened by the Institute for Human Rights, Åbo Akademi University, Turku/Åbo, 30 November–2 December 1990, Article 3(1), IRRC, No. 282, 1991, p. 331.