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Features of Constitution1

Is there a constitution? Yes
Does the constitution provide for freedom of religion? Yes


Constitution Year 1868
Last Amended 2009
Source World Intellectual Property Organization
Translation Unofficial translation by ARDA staff from French source
Current as of May 11, 2011

Constitution Excerpts (clauses that reference religion)2

Art. 19

Freedom of worship, public worship and the freedom of express religious opinions are guaranteed, subject to punishment for crimes committed during the exercise of these freedoms.

Art. 20

No one may be compelled to contribute in any way whatsoever to the acts and ceremonies of worship or to observe days of rest.

Art. 22

State intervention in the appointment and installation of heads of religions, the method by which religions appoints and dismiss ministers of religion, the right to correspond with superiors and publicize their acts, and Church-State relations are subject to agreements to be submitted to the Chamber of Deputies for the provisions requiring it intervention.

Art. 25

The Constitution guarantees the right to peaceful, unarmed assembly, in accordance with the laws that regulate the exercise of this right without prior authorization.
This provision does not apply to outdoor gatherings, political, religious or other types of meetings which are fully subject to laws and police regulations.

Art. 106

The salaries and pensions of ministers of religion are dependent on the State and are regulated by law.

Art. 119

Pending the conclusion of agreements provided for in Art. 22, the current provisions relating to religions remain in force.


1.  Data under the "Features of Constitution" heading are drawn from coding of the U.S. State Department's 2008 International Religious Freedom Reports conducted by researchers at the Association of Religion Data Archives. The article by Brian Grim and Roger Finke describes the coding of the International Religious Freedom reports. A dataset with these and the other international measures highlighted on the country pages can be downloaded from this website. Used with permission.

2.  The constitutional excerpts shown above are reproduced from the websites given in the "Source" field; the links to these websites were active as of May 2011. Where the constitutional text shown on these websites was provided in a language other than English, this text was translated to English by ARDA staff with assistance from web-based translation utilities such as Google Translate and Yahoo! Babel Fish. Constitutional text was converted to American English where applicable. Constitutional clauses were judged to contain religious content based largely on the standards used in the construction of the Religion and State Constitutions Dataset collected by Jonathan Fox. Emphases were added to the text by ARDA staff to highlight religious content in articles that also contain content that does not pertain to matters of religion. The data on this page were correct to the best of the knowledge of the ARDA as of the date listed in the "Current as of" field shown above. Please contact us at if you are aware of any incorrect information provided on this page.

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