Religious Symbols and New Populist Movements in the Colombian Constitutional Court

The Colombian Constitutional Court, when facing cases regarding the presence of religious symbols in public spaces or the use of public funds for religious celebrations, has followed the European Court of Human Rights and has adopted a distinction between passive and active symbols. This paper will argue that the Court, when defining what it considers as a passive symbol, has followed a new set of right wing religious populist movement. Even though the religious symbolism debate is not the most well known, it illustrates the impact far-right populism has had in shaping the current constitutional jurisprudence in Colombia. Furthermore, it sheds light on what future debates on the protection of minority rights might look like in the Colombian context.