Peru : Proposed Law on Religious Freedom and Equality Submitted to Government
In a highly-significant move, a working group on religious freedom and equality has submitted a proposed law to the Peruvian government’s Ministry of Justice that would guarantee equality of treatment for all religions and persons in the country.
“This proposal will be studied by the Ministry of Justice, and may be amended,” says Dr. Abelardo Muro, one of the bill’s writers and proponents. “But however it is presented, this will be the most important recognition given to, and guarantee of, religious freedom and religious equality ever — this inherent right with which human beings are created.”
The bill’s 28 articles include a robust defense of religious freedom as a fundamental human right, and echoes international declarations guaranteeing the right to change one’s religion, to practice religion in accordance with the dictates of conscience, and the equality of religious bodies before the law. This last point is particularly significant in that other religious groups would be able to claim the same exemptions from taxes and other benefits currently only enjoyed by the majority religion.