Welcome to USCIRF

  • USCIRF Chair Rev. Thomas J. Reese, S.J. Welcome to USCIRF

  • USCIRF Chair Thomas J. Reese, S.J. participating in a Religion News Service event on "Tolerance: A Key To Religious Freedom" (Photo courtesy of RNS/Cathy Grossman), February 9, 2017

  • USCIRF Commissioners with the Honorable Frank Wolf, Distinguished Senior Fellow of the 21st Century Wilberforce Initiative, February 8, 2017. 

  • USCIRF Chair Rev. Thomas J. Reese, S.J., and Commissioners Kristina Arriaga and Jackie Walcott meet with Bob Fu, founder and president of China Aid, and a delegation of rule of law and religious freedom advocates, February 3, 2017.

    USCIRF Chair Rev. Thomas J. Reese, S.J., and Commissioners Kristina Arriaga and Jackie Wolcott meet with Bob Fu, founder and president of China Aid, and a delegation of rule of law and religious freedom advocates, February 3, 2017.

  • USCIRF Vice Chair James J. Zogby speaking at the China Aid 15-year anniversary event, January 31, 2017.

    USCIRF Vice Chair James J. Zogby speaking at the China Aid 15-year anniversary event, January 31, 2017.  

  • USCIRF Chair Thomas J. Reese, S.J., and Senior Policy Analyst Tiffany Lynch, speak at a St. Mary's Law School event on USCIRF's report "Barriers to Protection: The Treatment of Asylum Seekers in Expedited Removal," San Antonio, Texas, January 19, 2017.

    USCIRF Chair Thomas J. Reese, S.J., and Senior Policy Analyst Tiffany Lynch, speak at a St. Mary's Law School event on USCIRF's report "Barriers to Protection: The Treatment of Asylum Seekers in Expedited Removal," San Antonio, Texas, January 19, 2017.

  • USCIRF delegation meets with Assistant Foreign Minister for Human Rights Leila Bahaa Al-Din during a visit to Egypt, January 18, 2017. Click here to see more photos from the Egypt visit.

    USCIRF delegation meets with Assistant Foreign Minister for Human Rights Leila Bahaa Al-Din during a visit to Egypt, January 18, 2017. Click here to see more photos from the Egypt visit.

  • USCIRF held an event at the National Press Club titled "Burma at the Brink: Religious Freedom Violations Threaten its Future." At the event, USCIRF released two reports highlighting religious freedom conditions in Burma, December 13, 2016. Watch the event here.

    USCIRF held an event at the National Press Club titled "Burma at the Brink: Religious Freedom Violations Threaten its Future." At the event, USCIRF released two reports highlighting religious freedom conditions in Burma, December 13, 2016. Watch the event here

  • From left to right: Daniel Mark (USCIRF Vice Chairman), Clifford D. May (USCIRF Commissioner), Thomas J. Reese, S.J. (USCIRF Chair), Greg Mitchell (IRF Roundtable), and John Ruskay (USCIRF Commissioner) at the International Religious Freedom Roundtable on December 13, 2016.

    From left to right: Daniel Mark (USCIRF Vice Chairman), Clifford D. May (USCIRF Commissioner), Thomas J. Reese, S.J. (USCIRF Chair), Greg Mitchell (IRF Roundtable), and John Ruskay (USCIRF Commissioner) at the International Religious Freedom Roundtable on December 13, 2016.

  • USCIRF Chair Thomas J. Reese, S.J. (center) and Commissioners Kristina Arriaga and Jackie Wolcott meet with Rebiya Kadeer and Omer Kanat of the World Uyghur Congress, October 14, 2016.

    USCIRF Chair Thomas J. Reese, S.J. (center) and Commissioners Kristina Arriaga and Jackie Wolcott meet with Rebiya Kadeer and Omer Kanat of the World Uyghur Congress, October 14, 2016.

USCIRF 2016 Annual Report

United States Commission on International Religious FreedomThe U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) released its 2016 Annual Report on May 2, 2016. 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 nine countries be re-designated as “countries of particular concern,” or CPCs: Burma, China, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

In addition, USCIRF also recommends ten countries as Tier 2 Countries, those countries whose governments engages in or tolerates at least one of the elements of the "systematic, ongoing, and egregious" standard, but do not fully meet the CPC standard: Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Cuba, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Laos, Malaysia, Russia, and Turkey. Other Countries Monitored include: Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Horn of Africa, Kyrgyzstan, Western Europe.

Barriers to Protection

Report cover of Barriers to Protection

USCIRF on August 2, 2016 released a new report, Barriers to Protection: The Treatment of Asylum Seekers in Expedited Removal, which highlights serious problems with the U.S. government's treatment of asylum seekers in Expedited Removal. View the report here. USCIRF presented findings from the report at an August 3, 2016 event with Human Rights First. Watch the event here

USCIRF Issues Reports on Religious Freedom Violations in Burma

The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) released two reports highlighting Burma’s serious religious freedom challenges:

USCIRF Welcomes CPC Designations: Urges Additional Designations and Actions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 20, 2016
 

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) welcomes Secretary of State John Kerry’s re-designation on April 15, 2016 of Burma, China, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, as “countries of particular concern,” or CPCs, under the International Religious Freedom Act, and the designation for the first time of Tajikistan as a CPC.

New USCIRF Commissioner Appointed

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 21, 2016
 

WASHINGTON, DC – At the recommendation of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Ambassador Jackie Wolcott was appointed to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) on March 14.  Ambassador Wolcott will serve a two-year term and succeeds Commissioner Mary Ann Glendon whose term expires on May 14.

India: USCIRF Not Issued Visas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 3, 2016
 

WASHINGTON, D.C.  – The Indian government today failed to issue visas to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) in time for a long planned trip to India. The goal of the Commission’s trip was to discuss and assess religious freedom conditions in that nation.

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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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