• Click here to read the 2015 Annual Report.

  • USCIRF Chair Dr. Katrina Lantos Swett. Message from the chair.

  • Dwight Bashir, Deputy Director of Policy & Research, met with Bahraini cleric Maytham Al Salman to discuss civil society coalitions, May 27, 2015.

  • USCIRF Chair Katrina Lantos Swett and Annette Lantos with Monir Khanjani and Bijan Masumian, family members of seven Baha’i leaders imprisoned in Iran, May 14, 2015.

  • USCIRF Chair Katrina Lantos Swett spoke at the Newseum Institute on April 16, 2015 at an event titled "Religious Freedom & Foreign Policy." Watch the event here. (Photo: Maria Bryk/Newseum)

  • USCIRF Chair Dr. Katrina Lantos Swett with Rebiya Kadeer, President of the World Uyghur Congress, at the Opening Ceremony of the Uyghur Youth Training Seminar, May 6, 2015.  

  • USCIRF Policy Analyst Tina Mufford with Khmer Krom Buddhist monks, April 23, 2015

  • Knox Thames, USCIRF Policy and Research Director, with U.S. military chaplains and Brian Grim at the “Religion Matters” conference at U.S. Southern Command, April 22, 2015.

  • USCIRF Commissioner Rev. Thomas J. Reese (center right) met with Archbishop Michael L. Fitzgerald (center), the former Apostolic Nuncio in Egypt and President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue from 2002-2006.  The meeting was hosted by the Africa Faith and Justice Network. March 6, 2015.

Defending Freedoms Project

In December 2012, the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, in conjunction with the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom and Amnesty International USA, launched the Defending Freedoms Project with the aim of supporting human rights and religious freedom throughout the world with a particular focus on prisoners of conscience.

Specifically, Members of Congress “adopt” prisoners of conscience, standing in solidarity with these brave men and women, while committing to advocate publicly for their release.

Click the interactive map below to view the status of prisoners of conscience highlighted in the Defending Freedoms Project

Spotlight

The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) released its 2015 Annual Report on April 30, 2015. In the report, USCIRF recommends that the State Department add these eight countries to its list of “countries of particular concern,” defined under law as countries where particularly severe violations of religious freedom are tolerated or perpetrated: Central African Republic, Egypt, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, Syria, Tajikistan, and Vietnam.

USCIRF also recommends that the following eight countries be re-designated as “countries of particular concern,” or CPCs: Burma,... Read More

Social Media

USCIRF Welcomes Release of Jailed Burmese Activist, Urges Freedom for All Burmese Prisoners of Conscience

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 3, 2015 | USCIRF

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) commends the release of activist Dr. Tun Aung and urges the government of Burma to release other prisoners of conscience in fulfillment of the promises of President Thein Sein. 

USCIRF Warns of Potential Religiously-Motivated Violence Around Nigeria’s Upcoming Elections

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 2, 2015 | USCIRF

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Reports of pre-election violence, combined with rising societal and political tensions, increase the likelihood of religiously-motivated violence around Nigeria’s February 14 presidential elections, warns the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). 

...on blasphemy laws

Many countries around the world have laws that punish expression deemed blasphemous, defamatory of religion, or contemptuous or insulting to religion or religious symbols, figures, or feelings.  The application of these laws has resulted in individuals being jailed for merely expressing a different religious belief or being falsely accused.

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About the Commission

Who We Are

USCIRF is an independent, bipartisan U.S. federal government commission, the first of its kind in the world, that monitors the universal right to freedom of religion or belief abroad.

What We're About

Inherent in religious freedom is the right to think as we please, believe or not believe as our conscience leads, and live out our beliefs openly, peacefully, and without fear.

We are about freedom

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