Religion and Human Rights in Present-Day Serbia
In Serbia, human rights are in the process of gaining new meaning in society. This transformation is a long and slow-moving process and expressions of intolerance in the form of violent attacks against minority religious communities are still quite often. An encouraging development is that representatives of various religious communities have been conducting a dialogue in recent years, striving to achieve reconciliation and a higher level of cooperation. This includes conferences and religious services organized and conducted by representatives of different religious groups.
When looking at developments in the area of church-state affairs in recent years we can notice that several positive steps have been taken. These include the bringing of new legislation and attempts at harmonizing national law with international standards, the increase of legal guarantee of general human rights protection and a stronger and wider inter-religious dialogue. Negative phenomenon includes a low level of religious tolerance in society, the postponement of resolving outstanding legal questions, the preferential treatment of the Serbian Orthodox Church by the state, very often at the expense of the other religious communities and the general discrepancies between the written letter of the law and its implementation in everyday life.