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Moldova PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 25 November 2009 14:06
Religious Freedom Ranking:
2.5 out of 5 stars: Poor


The Constitution provides for religious freedom; however, some laws restrict the activities of certain religious organizations. There have been reports of abuse and discrimination based on religious belief.  Jehovah’s Witnesses, Jews and Pentecostals have been the most affected.

The country has a population of 3.56 million and 528,000 in the separatist region of Transnistria. The main religion is Orthodox Christianity constituting 96 percent of the population. Adherents constituting less than 10 percent of the population include Roman Catholics, Baptists, Pentecostals, Seventh-day Adventists, Muslims, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Baha’is, Jews, members of the Unification Church, Molokans, Messianic Jews, Lutherans, Presbyterians and other evangelical Christian groups. There is no state religion.

In Transnistria the main religious organization is the Moldovan Orthodox Church (MOC).  Other religious groups include Roman Catholics, members of the Old Rite Orthodoxy, Baptists, Seventh-day Adventists, evangelical Protestants, Jews and Lutherans.

The Ministry of Justice (MOJ) has denied the registration requests of three Muslim groups and the Falun Gong.

The law on education states “moral and spiritual instruction” is required for primary schools and is optional for secondary schools and universities. Some schools offered religious classes, but it depended on parental request and the availability of funds whether students could participate in such classes.  On May 8, 2010, The MOC organized a campaign calling for mandatory “Orthodox Basics” classes in all elementary and secondary schools.  On June 15, the Chisinau Court of Appeals ruled in favor of a petition that mandatory religious classes were unconstitutional.

In Transnistria, religious education may be given in schools only if parents respect the child’s freedom of choice to accept such an offer. Transnistrian officials allowed for the continued use of textbooks in all school levels containing defamatory accusations regarding the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

There have been no reports of religious prisoners or forced religious conversions.

2010 U.S. State Report International Religious Freedom on Moldova

Last Updated on Tuesday, 14 February 2012 18:55