Religion in Swaziland

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Baitul Hadi mosque, Hlatikulu

Swaziland is religiously diverse society with Christianity and Islam being the most widely professed religions. According to recent estimates, the population of Swaziland is 40% African Zionist (a Christian sect), 20% Catholic, 10% Muslim (mainly Sunni), with 30% from other religions, including Anglican, Baha'i, Methodist and Mormon, although estimates can vary widely.[1][2] The Zionist Churches, which blend Christianity and indigenous ancestral worship, predominate in rural areas.[2] A large Roman Catholic presence, including churches, schools, and other infrastructure, continues to flourish.[2] The country forms a single diocese - the Diocese of Manzini.

Followers of Islam, Judaism and the Baha'i Faith are located in urban areas.[2] Islam in Swaziland probably dates to the colonial period, when many Muslims settled in from other countries under the dominion of the British Empire.[citation needed] Nearly all Muslims in Swaziland are Sunni. However, there are a small number of Ahmadi Muslims also.[3] Most immigrants from South Asia practice Islam.[2] There are few atheists.[2] Missionaries continue to play a role in rural development.[2]

The new Constitution, which went into effect on February 8, 2006, provides for freedom of religion. The Government generally respects freedom of religion in practice.[2] The US government received no reports of societal abuse or discrimination based on religious belief or practice during 2008.[2]

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