U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom Hearing
Religious Freedom in Nigeria:
Extremism and Government Inaction
Wednesday, June 9, 2021
10:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Please join the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) for a virtual hearing on the escalation of violence by nonstate actors in Nigeria and its potential to exacerbate deteriorating religious freedom conditions.
Insecurity is spreading in Nigeria, with violent attacks against civilians or security forces occurring daily. Among the complex web of armed actors and motivations, extremists in various parts of the country target individuals and communities based on their religious identity. Christian and Muslim communities fear for their lives, risking death, mutilation, and abduction when they worship in public and celebrate significant religious ceremonies.
Amidst this shocking scale of violence, government inaction is pervasive. Impunity for extremists who target religious communities and houses of worship is systemic across much of the country. In some localities, politicians prioritize elite bargains over the safety of religious communities. The federal government’s approach has failed to curb the violence and protect its citizens’ rights to freedom of religion or belief.
How can the U.S. government encourage and support Nigeria in addressing impunity for extremist violence? Witnesses will review violence inflicted on religious communities in Nigeria, explain where the federal government’s efforts to address these violations are falling short, and explore policy options for the U.S. government to help protect religious freedom for Nigerian communities.
Submitted for the Record:
This hearing is open to Members of Congress, congressional staff, the public, and the media. Members of the media should register online and can email firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions or to schedule an interview. The video recording of the hearing will be posted on the Commission website. For any additional questions, please contact Nina Ullom at Nullom@uscirf.gov or (202) 322-0232.