UNESCO Social and Human Sciences
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Final Act of the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe (CSCE)

The Final Act of the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe was sigend in Helsinki on 1 August 1975.

1(a) Declaration on Principles Guiding Relations between Participating States 

VII.  Respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms,including the freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief  
    1. The participating States will respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief, for all without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion. 
    3. Within this framework the participating States will recognize and respect the freedom of the individual to profess and practice, alone or in community with others, religion or belief acting in accordance with the dictates of his own conscience.
Co-operation in Humanitarian and Other Fields 
1. Human Contacts  
(d) Travel for Personal or Professional Reasons 
The participating States intend to facilitate wider travel by their citizens for personal or professional reasons and to this end they intend in particular: 
- gradually to simplify and to administer flexibly the procedures for exit and entry; 
- to ease regulations concerning movement of citizens from  the other participating States in their territory, with due regard to security requirements. 
 They will endeavour gradually to lower, where necessary, the fees for visas and official travel documents. 
 They intend to consider, as necessary, means - including, in so far as appropriate, the conclusion of multilateral or bilateral consular conventions or other relevant agreements or understandings - for the improvement of arrangements to provide consular services, including legal and consular assistance. 
* * *
They confirm that religious faiths, institutions and organizations, practising within the constitutional framework of the participating States, and their representatives can, in the field of their activities, have contacts and meetings among themselves and exchange information.
Source: A full text version of the Helsinki Final Act can be found on the Internet site of the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe. 

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