December 29, 2009

Global Restrictions on Religion

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About one-third of the countries in the world — 64 nations — have high or very high restrictions on religion.

A study by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life, finds that 64 nations — about one-third of the countries in the world — have high or very high restrictions on religion. Because some of the most restrictive countries are very populous, nearly 70% of the world’s 6.8 billion people live in countries with heavy restrictions on religion, the brunt of which often falls on religious minorities. Some restrictions result from government actions, policies and laws. Others result from hostile acts by private individuals, organizations and social groups. Among the world’s 25 most populous countries, Iran, Egypt, Indonesia, Pakistan and India stand out as having the most restrictions, taking both measures into account, while Brazil, Japan, the United States, Italy, South Africa and the United Kingdom have the least. Read More