Turkey needs a principled approach to freedom of religion
The Norwegian Helsinki Committee (NHC) Freedom of Belief Initiative outlines in this report, covering the period from July 2013 to June 2014, that Turkey needs to take comprehensive steps in order to bring legislation and practice in line with international human rights law.
This is the English version of a longer and more comprehensive report in the Turkish language. Each chapter summarises the main findings and presents recommendations on steps needed in order to bring legislation and/or practice in line with international human rights standards on freedom of religion or belief.
The NHC launched the Freedom of Belief Initiative in March 2013. The initiative built on an already existing initiative in Turkey, The Freedom of Belief Initiative (İÖG), led by Mine Yildirim, a Turkish expert in the field. The three years project, 2013-2016, aims at laying the foundation for a permanent Turkish human rights organization specializing on freedom of religion or belief (FoRB).
The aim of the project is to improve respect and protection of freedom of religion or belief in Turkey. Monitoring, documentation, reporting, policy recommendations and advocacy are key activities of the project.
The website www.inancozgurlugugirisimi.org (freedom of belief initiative, İÖG) is the main communication outlet of the project. The website functions as a comprehensive resource for freedom of religion or belief issues in Turkey. It includes up-to-date news, comments on legislative developments influencing the protection of freedom of religion or belief, relevant European Court of Human Rights judgments, reports, opinions and policy recommendations produced by the İÖG as well as relevant reports published by national and international organizations and faith groups in Turkey.