Religious Diversity: accomodation for Social Cohesion. Gaps in the legal protection of religious diversity: generic versus specific protection instruments

Eduardo J. Ruiz Vieytez


The legal protection of religious diversity in plural societies is mainly supported by the human right to freedom of religion and belief, which is widely recognized under the international human rights law. However, interpretations of this law are far from univocal when it comes to managing the situation of persons whose religious beliefs are a minority. The so-called harmonisation practices are techniques to spread the content and exercise of this right. Similarly, the so-called Rights of minorities (as is the case of religious ones) also provide a protection framework, the scope of which has not yet been clearly defined. The current diversity of European societies and their commitment to protect the diversity and minorities lead us to seek a more focused and effective framework of protection, choosing between rights and generic or specific instruments.

Published online: 11 December 2017


religious diversity; harmonisation practices; minorities; social cohesion

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