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Recognition of religion or belief in Iraq

According to the standards set out in the SRR, conditions for RoRB in the Republic of Iraq (including Iraqi Kurdistan) are classified terminal.

Recognition of religion or belief in Iraq


  • The state religion is Islam.

  • There exists no official recognition for belief systems and their related communities in Iraq.

  • Although various religious communities are recognised in the law, all groups are subject to severe restrictions on their religious activity, particularly non-Muslim groups.

  • A nationwide ban on the Baha’i Faith is particularly terminal in its application.

  • The attribution of offices (diwans) in dealing with their respective denominations does not cover all recognised denominations such as Jews.

  • The repression experienced under the ISIS occupation of parts of Iraq still reverberates although the situation has improved since.

Iraqi Kurdistan:

  • There does exist an established recognition system through the Kurdistan Regional Government but it imposes a membership quota and its requirement for a religion not to be “anti-Islam” is hardly practicable for any religion that is not Islamic.

Positive elements:

  • Nil.


  • Complete dismantlement of the abuse of recognition is essential to making any further headway to attaining genuine religious freedom in Iraq; this means halting the persecution of minorities, establishing a recognition system that has provisions for both existential recognition and legal registration and the disestablishment of Islam.

RoRB Topic
RoRB Compliance
RoRB Classification
Country or territory
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