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Données sociologiques et juridiques sur la religion en Europe et au-delà

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Séparation et liberté de religion

Since 1983, the system of church and state relationships is characterised as one of separation of church and state, although this principle has never been formulated in the Constitution or in any further legislation. Nevertheless, it does play a role, and is referred to in the legislative process, in administration and in court decisions. The separation of church and state is not a “strict separation” in the sense that church and state should be completely separated. The principle of separation of church and state must be interpreted in harmony with and in relation to the principle of state neutrality and of freedom of religion or belief as reflected in the Articles 1 and 6 of the Constitution.

The Article 6 of the Constitution of 1983 guarantees freedom of religious belief and freedom of non-religious belief. On the basis of Article 6 and Article 9, the Public Manifestations Act was enacted. This Act regulates, among other things, religious manifestations outside buildings and enclosed places, including religious processions. Article 1 does not permit discrimination on the grounds of religion, belief, political opinion, race or sex or any other grounds whatsoever. A specific reference to religion can be found in Article 23 which relates to education and guarantees freedom of (denominational) education.

Voir aussi : VAN BIJSTERVELD Sophie C., "État et Églises aux Pays-Bas", in ROBBERS Gerhard (ed.), État et Églises dans l’Union européenne, 2e éd., Baden-Baden, Nomos, 2008, p. 390-416.

28 septembre 2012