20 May 2016

Samoa PM says freedom of religion not part of changes

7:16 am on 20 May 2016

Samoa's Prime Minister said any proposed amendments to the country's constitution would unlikely touch Article 11 on freedom of religion.

Article 11 states that anyone can practice any religion they like, as an individual or in association with any group.

But Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi said any amendments to the constitution would focus on making it clearer that Samoa is a Christian country.

In his weekly radio interview, Tuila'epa said this was part of discussions by members of the Fono Faavae decades ago when they were considering Samoa's constitution before independence.

However he said foreign advisors at the time had decided not to do so because the country was at peace.

This week the Secretary General of the Samoa Council of Churches called for Islam to be banned in Samoa, calling Islam a threat.

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