• 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 staff met with, from left to right: Dasko Shirwani (Director of Outreach, Kurdistan Regional Government), Vian Dakhil Shekh Saeed (Member of the Iraq Council of Representatives), and Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman (Representative, Kurdistan Regional Government), April 21, 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 Statement on flogging of Saudi blogger, Raif Badawi

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 9, 2015 | USCIRF

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) is deeply disturbed by the news that a Saudi blogger, Raif Badawi, was publicly flogged 50 times today in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia as part of a punishment for a blasphemy conviction.  USCIRF has long followed Mr. Badawi’s case, expressed its grave concern, and called for his release.

North Korea Must be Held Accountable for its Abysmal Human Rights Record

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 22, 2014 | USCIRF

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) today welcomed the UN General Assembly’s passage on December 18 of a resolution that condemns North Korea’s “ongoing systematic, widespread and gross violations of human rights” and transmits a UN report on these violations to the Security Council.  The UN’s annual resolution on human rights in North Korea passed by a 116-20 vote, with 53 abstentions. 

Turkey: Reopen Halki

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

November 20, 2014 | USCIRF

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) today urged the Turkish government to reopen the Greek Orthodox Halki Seminary, the only Greek Orthodox educational institution in Turkey, which was closed 43 years ago this month.  Halki remains closed despite Turkish government officials’ promises and public statements of support for its reopening.

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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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