This chapter considers the Court’s jurisprudence on the freedom of speech and religion. The Court’s work on the freedom of speech examines familiar conflicts—such as between speech and public order, or speech and the privacy of reputation of others—but in an unfamiliar context where the Court has often had to contend with the implications of the country’s internal armed conflict. Thus, for example, the Court has had to weigh the damage that might be done by publishing the statements of illegal armed groups and the effect of statements linking public officials with those groups. The Court’s jurisprudence on freedom of religion had sought to recognize plurality in a climate where Catholicism has historically dominated public and private life. This chapter considers both the Court’s jurisprudence striking down core provisions of the Concordat treaty with Rome, and its recognition of the right of conscientious objection from military service.
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