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San Jose Mercury News -- Clinton's historic visit to Burma must advance religious freedom

December 1, 2011 | by Azizah Y. al-Hibri and Richard D. Land

The following article appeared in the San Jose Mercury News on November 30, 2011:

On Nov. 6, Burmese soldiers burst into a church in the state of Kachin, burning and looting it, severely beating its pastor, the Rev. Yajawng Hkawng, and kidnapping 50 of its members for forced labor, including women whom they reportedly raped.

USCIRF Letter to Secretary Clinton regarding Burma

November 28, 2011 | by USCIRF

The Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
U.S. Department of State
Washington, DC

Dear Madam Secretary:

As you prepare to travel to Burma, I am writing on behalf of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) to urge you to raise concerns about freedom of religion publically during your trip. Religion drives serious human rights abuses in Burma, particularly against ethnic minorities and Buddhist monks who participated in peaceful protests in 2007. We believe improvements in religious freedom should be a critical benchmark for gauging the government of Burma’s commitment to genuine reform.

USCIRF Comment on the State Department's Designation of "Countries of Particular Concern" and Annual Report on International Religious Freedom

September 13, 2011 | By USCIRF

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) welcomes the designation of "countries of particular concern” (CPCs) by the Obama administration and its release of the Annual Report on International Religious Freedom.USCIRF urges increased U.S. government action to promote freedom of religion or belief.

USCIRF Identifies World's Worst Religious Freedom Violators: Egypt Cited for First Time

April 28, 2011 | by USCIRF

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) today released its 2011 Annual Report and recommended that the Secretary of State name the following nations "countries of particular concern” or CPCs: Burma, China, Egypt, Eritrea, Iran, Iraq, Nigeria, North Korea, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam.

For the first time, USCIRF recommended that Egypt be designated a CPC.

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