Council: Human Rights Council Date: March 25th, 2011 HRC/Res/B/2 Topic: Examining the Situation of Religious Freedom Sponsors: The Russian Federation, The People’s Republic of China, The Republic of Cuba, The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, The Federal Republic of Nigeria, The Islamic Republic of Pakistan Co-Sponsors: The United Mexican States, The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and The Kingdom of Bahrain 1 Affirming faith in fundamental human rights and the dignity and worth of the human 2 person, 3 4 Taking into consideration the responsibility of the United Nations’ member states to 5 address the issue of religious freedom, 6 7 Appealing to the diversity of member states on the matter of respecting religious freedom, 8 9 Stressing the respect of human rights and fundamental freedoms enshrined in Article 1810 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which reads as follows:11 1. Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. This12 right shall include freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice,13 and freedom, either individually or in community with others and in public or14 private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and15 teaching16 2. No one shall be subject to coercion, which would impair his freedom to have or to17 adopt a religion or belief of his choice.18 3. Freedom to manifest ones religion or beliefs may be subject only to such19 limitations as are prescribed by law and are necessary to protect public safety,20 order, health, or morals or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others21 4. The States Parties to the present Covenant undertake to have respect for the22 liberty of parents and, when applicable, legal guardians to ensure the religious and23 moral education of their children in conformity with their own convictions2425 Reiterating Article 9 (2) of the European Union Convention of Human Rights which26 states : “Freedom to manifest ones religion or beliefs shall be subject only to such27 limitations as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a (democratic) society in the28 interests of public safety, for the protection of public order, health or morals, or the29 protection of the rights and freedoms of others”3031 Emphasizing that freedom of belief is an absolute and non-derogable right,3233 Recognizing that practice is an act that is essential and central to belief,34
35 Respecting the rights and freedoms of others and emphasizing the equality of religious36 practice,3738 Expressing deep grief towards the use of religious tensions to aggravate armed conflict,3940 Believing that human dignity is a foundational criterion which can privilege freedom of41 religion over freedom of speech,424344 The Human Rights Council hereby:454647 1- Welcomes the efforts of the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or48 Belief for distinguishing belief from practice;4950 2- Suggests the question of setting limitations on a religious group’s practices51 based on respective domestic laws of any state member when practices are52 deemed controversial or harmful to others,5354 3- Strongly advocates the importance of respecting diversity of state members55 concerning the issue of religious freedom;5657 4- Highly appeals to the supremacy of domestic laws over international law with58 regards to domestic matters;5960 5- Declares that state intervention is only acceptable in cases when religious61 practices directly threaten public health, public order or national security,6263 6- Further explains that the penalty must be necessary and proportional to the64 potential threat;6566 7- Stresses the implementation Article 20 of the International Covenant on Civil67 and Political Rights and Security Council Resolution 1624 and encourages68 member states to incorporate legislative measures to prohibit advocacy of69 national, racial or religious hatred in conformity to international human rights70 obligations;7172 8- Condemns the use of force to resolve conflicts resulting from religious tensions;7374 9- Recognizes the concept of secularism to be a choice of member states that no75 state or international agency can impose;7677 10- Endorses the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political78 Rights and the European Union Convention of Human Rights;7980
81 11- Encourages the implementation of international awareness programmes82 promoting religious tolerance.