According to Article 31 of the Constitution, the freedom of conscience is guaranteed for all. Everyone has the right to profess any religion, or none at all. Forced imposition of religious views is unacceptable. Uzbekistan is a secular state where all religious organizations and citizens, regardless of their affiliation to a particular faith, are equal before the law. The state does not interfere with the activity of religious associations.
Islam is the majority Religion in Uzbekistan with a more than 90% Muslim population. Approximately 5% of the population are Russian Orthodox Christians.
There are more Sunnite than Shi'ite Muslims among the residents in Uzbekistan. Islam was brought to Uzbekistan during the 8th century when the Arabs entered Central Asia.
Currently, more than 2,000 religious organizations representing 16 different religions are operating in Uzbekistan.
The 16 religions in Uzbekistan include Islam, Orthodox Church, Judaism, Buddhism, the Roman Catholic Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church, Evangelical Christian Baptist Church, Full Gospel Christian Church, New Apostolic Church, the Christian Church, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Hare Krishna, and Religious Society of Bach.
In other words, more than 150 Christian organizations, eight Jewish communities, six Bahai communities, one Hare Krishna society, and one Buddhist temple freely operate in Uzbekistan.
Believers in Uzbekistan freely celebrate all religious holidays. Thus, every year Muslims celebrate Eid al-Adha and Ramadan on a larger scale; Christians, Easter and Christmas; and Jews, the High Holy Days and Purim.
Ziyarat Tourism in Uzbekistan
Ziyarat tourism is actively developing in Uzbekistan. The country rich for religious sites and holy relics.
In Tashkent, you can visit Khast Imam - a cultic architectural complex and the religious center of Tashkent where the world famous Uthman Quran has been preserved.
In Samarkand you can visit the famous Shahi Zinda necropolis, where the cousin of the prophet Muhammad - Qutham Ibn Abbas is buried and the mausoleum of Khoja Doniyar is located.
Bukhara is one of the main centers for ziyarat tourism. It is called Sacred because there is an unprecedented number of mosques and tombs of Muslim saints. In the Bukhara region there are seven graves of the great Sufis of the Nakshbandiya order, one of the most influential Sufi movements in Uzbekistan.
In February 2019, Bukhara hosted the First International Forum on ziyarat tourism, which resulted in the signing of the Bukhara Declaration on the recognition of Uzbekistan as a center of ziyarat tourism.
According to the Global Muslim Travel Index rating for 2019, Uzbekistan is among the ten most attractive countries among the member countries of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.