THURSDAY, OCTOBER 13, 2011
Kazakhstan: President Nazarbayev signs "restrictive, dangerous Religion Laws" | THE INSTITUTE
The law imposes compulsory government censorship of religious literature by requiring evaluation and approval of religious literature before it could be shipped into the country for non-personal use or placed in a library and restricts distribution of religious literature to religious buildings, religious educational institutions.
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev
Ahmadiyya Times | News Watch | US Desk
Source/Credit: THE INSTITUTE
Edited by Imran Jattala | October 13, 2011
Kazakh President Signs Restrictive, Dangerous Religion Laws
Alexandria, VA – Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev today signed into law two restrictive and oppressive religion laws that had met with resistance in the past.
The new laws threaten fundamental freedoms and places religious minorities at significant risk in the country, it was reported today by THE INSTITUTE on Religion and Public Policy in a press release.
“THE INSTITUTE ... is saddened by yet another example of democratic rollback in Kazakhstan,” commented THE INSTITUTE’s Founder and Chairman, Joseph K. Grieboski.
“Twice previously, President Nazarbayev wisely sent similarly dangerous draft laws to the Constitutional Council for review before signing. With his pen on paper today, President Nazarbayev moved Kazakhstan further toward the status of a pariah and dictatorial state, not the democracy it could have been,” Mr. Grieboski added according to the press release posted on THE INSTITUTE website.
In THE INSTITUTE’s expert analysis and opinion, says the press release, the legislation contravenes Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and United Nations (UN) standards as they clearly discriminate against minority religious groups.
According to the reports, the newly signed, the Religion Law will require compulsory registration as a religious organization including de-registeration of all religious organizations currently registered and force these organizations to “re-register”.
The law will also require all religious organizations to submit to a “religious study examination” where religious Scriptures and other documents are reviewed and impermissibly evaluated by the State.
Additionally the law prohibits an unregistered religious organization to obtain any other legal entity status and all religious activity by the unregistered religious organizations are now banned.
The law imposes compulsory government censorship of religious literature by requiring evaluation and approval of religious literature before it could be shipped into the country for non-personal use or placed in a library and restricts distribution of religious literature to religious buildings, religious educational institutions and “specifically identified stationary facilities identified by local executive bodies”
Under the new law any new places of worship will require government approvals for building and opening the worship centers.
The new Kazakh law will require registration of persons carrying out missionary activities and no person may carry out missionary activity until so registered. Furthermore, no person will be registered unless they have been invited to perform missionary work by a registered religious organization;
In complete repudiation of United Nations and OSCE standards the new law requires minority religious communities to meet onerous membership levels in order to register (minimum of 50 adult citizens).
The law imposes restrictions and sanctions on religious leaders if children participate in activities of the religious organization that one of the parent or legal guardian objects.
According to THE INSTITUTE, the Religion Law and the Administrative Code Law are completely inconsistent with fundamental human rights.
The restrictions and various sanctions are being imposed “in a manner impermissible under international standards”, THE INSTITUTE stated.
-- President Nazarbayev signs restrictive, dangerous Religion Laws
-- Ahmadiyya Times
-- Edited by Imran Jattala. Follow on twitter: @IJattala