Freedom Of Belief Initiative’s Submission to the UN Human Rights Committee for the List of Issues Prior to Reporting

Freedom of Belief Initiative made a submission to the UN Human Rights Committee ahead of the adoption of the List of Issues Prior to Reporting for the third periodic report of Turkey at its 132nd session.

WEBINAR INVITATION: “Freedom of religion or belief and gender equality”

Freedom of Belief Initiative invites you for a discussion on “Freedom of religion or belief and gender equality”. The webinar will be held on Thursday 1st July 2021, at 19.30 (GMT+3). Registration is required.

Freedom of Belief Initiative’s submission to the CM on the Zengin Group of Cases

The Norwegian Helsinki Committee’s Freedom of Belief Initiative made a submission to the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers (CM) on March 2, 2021. The submission aims to contribute to the monitoring process of the execution of the Zengin Group of Cases judgments regarding the compulsory Religious Culture and Knowledge of Ethics (RCKE) courses in Turkey.

Webinar: “Mechanisms to combat antisemitism in the world and in Turkey”

“Mechanisms to combat antisemitism in the world and in Turkey” webinar, organized by the Freedom of Belief Initiative was held on 13th January 2021.

Holocaust Remembrance Day: #WeRemember

Every year on 27 January, the date marks the liberation of the prisoners held in in the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Poland, victims of the Holocaust are commemorated all around the world.

Court: Compulsory Religion Class Against Equality Principle

The İstanbul 4th Administrative Court has given its final judgment on an appeal by a parent, who requested her child to be exempted from compulsory religion class. The court has ruled that the class is against the principle of equality.

Turkey's top court rules against headscarf ban

Turkey's Constitutional Court says university student's right of education, freedom of religion was violated with ban

Turkey’s appeals court rules Alevi minority’s cem houses are places of worship

While the judgment is positive, there is urgent need for putting inlace necessary legal measures.

Lachiri v. Belgium: Headscarf ban imposed on a civil party in a courtroom in violation of religious freedom

The Court’s ruling in Lachiri is to be welcome for its main finding, namely that prohibiting a private person from wearing a religious dress in a courtroom cannot be justified by the protection of public order and violates the right to religious freedom. However, this judgment remains focused on the specificities of the case and does little to clarify to what extent and in what circumstances religious dress prohibition may be deemed compatible with the Convention in other situations.

Criminal fine for discussion of Mohamed’s wives did not interfere with freedom of expression – Strasbourg

The Strasbourg Court concluded that the Austrian court had acted within its margin of appreciation by finding that "the impugned statements as going beyond the permissible limits of an objective debate and classifying them as an abusive attack on the Prophet of Islam".

UN Special Rapporteur: Antisemitism is a serious obstacle to the enjoyment of the right to freedom of religion or belief

In the report, which stands out as the first UN human rights report focused on antisemitism, it is noted with serious concern that the frequency of antisemitic incidents appears to be increasing in magnitude in several countries.

OSCE: Lack of hate crime recording means victims too often remain invisible

The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) has published the "2019 Hate Crime Report".

ECtHR (Grand Chamber): Sharia law applied to an inheritance dispute contrary to the will of the testator, a Greek belonging to the Muslim minority: violation of the Convention

The Court found that the difference in treatment suffered by the applicant, as a beneficiary of a will drawn up in accordance with the Civil Code by a testator of Muslim faith, as compared to a beneficiary of a will drawn up in accordance with the Civil Code by a non-Muslim testator, had had no objective and reasonable justification. There had therefore been a violation of Article 14 of the Convention read in conjunction with Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 to the Convention.

Buldu and Others v. Turkey

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has fined Turkey 57,650 euros for prosecuting and convicting four Jehovah’s Witnesses who refused compulsory military service, according to a statement from the Court on June 3. 

Otto-Preminger Institut v. Austria

The Otto Preminger Institut v. Austria case remains an important case concerning the intersection of the rights to freedom of expression and freedom of religion or belief.