USCIRF Releases New Report about Limitations on Freedom of Religion or Belief

Washington, DC – The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) today released the following new legislation factsheet about the limitations on the freedom of religion or belief.

FoRB Legislation Factsheet – This factsheet outlines the international human rights standards that govern limitations on freedom of religion or belief (FoRB). In addition to outlining the guidelines that could support restrictions on human rights, the factsheet explains the additional requirements governing limitations on FoRB. States may only limit FoRB in furtherance of an identified state interest, which are (1) public safety, (2) public order, (3) public health, (4) public morals, or (5) the fundamental rights and freedoms of others. The factsheet describes each legitimate interest and provides illustrative examples of both problematic and permissible restrictions.

In October 2019, USCIRF launched its FoRB Victims List, a database that collects information on states and entities that USCIRF has recommended for designation as: “countries of particular concern,” “entities of particular concern,” or countries on the “Special Watch List.” Many victims included in this database are targeted by laws that impermissibly restrict religious freedom.


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