Freedoms Collide: Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Religion in Russia in Comparative Perspective

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In the last decade ethnic and religious contradictions became a matter of growing concern and the issue of preserving the balance between the rights and interests of different groups of people comes to the forefront. There are many examples when freedom of expression is in opposition to freedom of religion. Two recent cases, the cartoons in the Danish newspaper and the recent parody of the Prophet Mohammed, show the importance of this issue. However, the notion of manifestation of religious beliefs, which in the paper is considered primary as a part of freedom of expression, is also very problematic. The paper considers models of coexistence of both freedoms adopted at the international level, in Europe and in Russia. The first chapter considers general approaches towards balancing of fundamental rights, including approaches of the Human Rights Committee and the European Court. The second chapter concentrates on the regulation of both freedoms in Russia, relevant international and domestic cases.

About the Author

Dmitry Kuznetsov
Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation
Russian Federation
Senior Officer at the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation (7-235 Engels ave., St. Petersburg, 194156, Russia)


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Supplementary files

For citation: Kuznetsov D. Freedoms Collide: Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Religion in Russia in Comparative Perspective. Russian Law Journal. 2014;2(2):75-100.

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