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The Varieties of Religious RepressionWhy Governments Restrict Religion$

Ani Sarkissian

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199348084

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199348084.001.0001

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(p.200) (p.201) Appendix B Categorizing Religious Repression

(p.200) (p.201) Appendix B Categorizing Religious Repression

Source:
The Varieties of Religious Repression
Publisher:
Oxford University Press

In this appendix, I explain how I code types of religious restrictions to create the index of religious repression and the categorization of number of targets of repression used in this book. I rely on a number of sources. Two comprehensive quantitative datasets provide the information for the bulk of my coding: the International Religious Freedom (IRF) dataset compiled by Brian Grim and Roger Finke (2006) and the Religion and State (RAS) dataset compiled by Jonathan Fox (2011). Both are available from the Association of Religion Data Archives (www.thearda.com). In addition to these datasets (which code restrictions only up to 2008), I rely on a number of reports from governments, international human rights organizations, the media, and other sources. Sources for specific restrictions are cited in the text.

Originally conceptualized by Brian Grim and Roger Finke, the International Religious Freedom Dataset (IRF) codes reports prepared by the US State Department. In accordance with the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) of 1998, the Office of International Religious Freedom within the State Department prepares annual reports on the status of religious freedom in countries around the world. The US embassies prepare drafts of reports based on information from government and nongovernment sources in country and send them to the Office of International Religious Freedom, which revises and publishes the reports online (US Department of State 2011). The IRF dataset quantitatively codes the individual country reports into composite indices that measure government restriction of religion, social restriction of religion, and government favoritism of religion for 197 countries and territories. Data are available for the years 2001, 2003, 2005, and 2008.

Jonathan Fox has created the most comprehensive resource on state religion policy with his Religion and State Dataset (RAS) (Fox 2011). Fox measures four aspects of government involvement in religion for 177 countries between 1990 and (p.202) 2008: the official relationship between religion and the state, government support for and legislation of religion, government restriction of the majority religion, and discrimination against religious minorities (Fox 2008, 47–55). Each category measures multiple types of policy, and restrictions are coded individually according to their intensity. The RAS dataset also includes more detailed distinctions between support and restriction of religion than the IRF dataset. For instance, the RAS dataset measures multiple forms of government legislation of religious precepts as examples of government support for religion, because government enforces religious law or customs using the force of its coercive apparatus. The dataset also codes the existence of certain types of institutions—such as government religious bureaus or government-issued identity cards containing religious information—as separate types of state religion policy.

As detailed in chapter 2, I consider state-imposed restrictions on the following aspects of religion:

  1. 1. Individual or group observance of religious services, festivals, or holidays in public or private

  2. 2. Places of worship

  3. 3. Observation of religious laws

  4. 4. Conversion

  5. 5. Proselytizing

  6. 6. Formation of religious communities

  7. 7. Clerical appointments

  8. 8. Religious speech

  9. 9. Private religious education

  10. 10. Religious political parties

  11. 11. Nongovernmental associations affiliated with religious groups

  12. 12. Political activities and/or speech of religious leaders or individuals

  13. 13. Access to political office based on religious identity or position

In addition to counting whether states impose significant or large-scale restrictions on these activities (include banning the activity), I also note whether each of the restrictions is imposed against the religious majority, minorities, or both.

This categorization of religious restrictions is a departure from the RAS dataset. First, it is less comprehensive, aiming to describe general patterns of restrictions rather than capturing every possible type of restriction imposed. Second, it does not consider all kinds of state enforcement of religious laws (which fall under the RAS dataset “religious legislation” variables) as constituting religious repression (see Fox 2008). Therefore, the present study focuses primarily on two categories of restrictions the RAS dataset codes: religious discrimination against minority religions and regulation of and restrictions on the majority religion or all religions. As these data are current to 2008, I use other sources to update the data to 2010. (p.203)

Table B.1 lists the total number of state-imposed restrictions, the number of restrictions imposed against the religious majority, and the number of restrictions imposed against religious minorities. Higher numbers correspond to higher levels of state repression against religious groups. Tables in chapters 3, 4, 5, and 6 list the specific types of restrictions found in each of the countries I isolate for closer study. (p.204) (p.205)

Table B.1 Number of state-imposed restrictions by type of religious group (2010)

Country

Total

Majority

Minority

Albania

0

0

0

Algeria

10

8

9

Angola

2

0

2

Armenia

8

1

8

Azerbaijan

12

11

10

Bahrain

6

6

6

Bangladesh

3

3

1

Belarus

11

6

11

Benin

1

1

1

Bosnia-Herzegovina

4

1

3

Botswana

0

0

0

Burkina Faso

1

1

1

Burma

10

7

9

Burundi

1

1

1

Cambodia

2

1

2

Cameroon

0

0

0

Central African Republic

2

1

2

Chad

7

5

5

China

12

11

12

Colombia

1

1

0

Congo, Democratic Republic

2

0

2

Congo, Republic

1

1

1

Côte d’Ivoire

2

1

2

Croatia

2

0

2

Cuba

11

10

11

Ecuador

1

0

1

Egypt

11

10

10

Eritrea

12

9

12

Ethiopia

6

2

6

Gabon

0

0

0

Gambia

1

1

1

Georgia

5

2

5

Ghana

1

1

1

Guatemala

2

1

2

Guinea

1

1

1

Guinea-Bissau

1

1

1

Haiti

1

1

0

Honduras

2

1

2

Indonesia

9

8

9

Iran

11

5

11

Jordan

11

7

10

Kazakhstan

9

7

8

Kenya

2

1

2

Kuwait

11

7

8

Kyrgyzstan

9

9

7

Laos

8

4

7

Lebanon

6

2

5

Lesotho

1

0

1

Liberia

2

2

2

Libya

8

6

6

Madagascar

3

1

3

Malawi

1

0

1

Malaysia

12

7

10

Mali

2

2

1

Mauritania

9

4

7

Mexico

6

5

5

Moldova

6

2

5

Mongolia

3

1

3

Morocco

12

8

10

Mozambique

3

3

3

Namibia

0

0

0

Nepal

6

4

5

Nicaragua

3

2

3

Niger

7

7

4

Nigeria

5

2

5

North Korea

11

10

11

Oman

7

4

6

Pakistan

9

7

9

Paraguay

1

1

1

Peru

1

0

1

Qatar

10

6

8

Romania

6

2

5

Russia

8

2

8

Rwanda

4

3

4

Saudi Arabia

13

9

13

Senegal

1

1

1

Serbia

4

1

4

Sierra Leone

1

1

1

Singapore

5

1

5

South Africa

0

0

0

Sri Lanka

3

0

3

Sudan

8

5

6

Swaziland

1

0

1

Syria

12

9

9

Taiwan

0

0

0

Tajikistan

10

10

4

Tanzania

3

2

3

Thailand

5

3

4

Togo

3

3

3

Tunisia

12

8

10

Turkey

10

8

9

Turkmenistan

10

7

9

Uganda

2

1

2

Ukraine

4

2

4

United Arab Emirates

7

5

6

Uzbekistan

11

10

10

Venezuela

4

2

4

Vietnam

12

10

12

Yemen

10

5

9

Zambia

1

0

1

Zimbabwe

3

1

3