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Freedom of Religion or Belief


Constitutional Provisions

According to the Constitution, in the Republic of Hungary everyone has the right to freedom of thought, freedom of conscience and freedom of religion.  This right shall include the free choice or acceptance of a religion or belief, and the freedom to publicly or privately express or decline to express, exercise and teach such religions and beliefs by way of religious actions, rites or in any other way, either individually or in a group (Art 60. 1,2).

Primary Legislation

According to the Law on Freedom of Conscience and Religion and the Churches (Act IV of 1990, hereafter Law on Religion) the right of freedom of conscience and religion includes the free choice or acceptance of a religion or other conscientious conviction and the freedom for everyone to manifest or to abstain from manifesting, to exercise or to teach their religion and conviction in public or in private, either individually or together with others, through religious acts and ceremonies or in other ways. No one may be prevented from exercising their freedom of conscience and religion, however the exercise of this right shall not exempt anyone from satisfying their obligations as citizens – this provision mainly refers to the payment of taxes and the performance of mandatory military service (abolished in 2004). No one may be discriminated against or favored through any privileges on the ground of their religion, convictions and manifestation or exercise thereof. The prohibition of discrimination also means that non-Hungarian speaking believers may exercise their religion in their mother tongue. Information on an individual’s religion and other beliefs constitutes sensitive private data according to the Hungarian constitutional regime, and such data cannot be recorded by the state. Parents and guardians are entitled to decide on the moral and religious education of their children (Art. 1-7).



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