Press Releases & Statements
This update describes the brutal conditions that religious prisoners face in Turkmenistan, including detention or disappearance in the country’s vast prison system. Muslims, whom the government has vaguely or falsely accused of “Islamic extremism,” represent a disproportionately high number of those who disappeared or are serving harsh sentences.
8/12/20: USCIRF Releases Iran Factsheet Highlighting Senior Sanctioned Officials Responsible for Egregious Religious Freedom Violations
This factsheet highlights key senior Iranian officials who the United States Department of Treasury has sanctioned for their complicity in severe violations of religious freedom.
USCIRF today condemned the death sentence announced on August 10 of 22-year-old Nigerian singer Yahaya Sharif-Aminu for allegedly insulting the Prophet Muhammad in a song he circulated on the messaging platform WhatsApp in March.
USCIRF today applauded the U.S. Department of Treasury’s designation of the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC) under the Global Magnitsky Act for committing egregious religious freedom violations against Uyghur and other Muslims.
7/31/20: USCIRF Commends Release of Religious Prisoner of Conscience Hamid Bin Haydara and 5 Other Baha’is in Yemen
USCIRF commends the Houthi authorities’ release of Religious Prisoner of Conscience Hamid bin Haydara along with five other detained members of the Baha’i community in Yemen. Charges against members of the Baha’i community remain in place despite their release.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE July 30, 2020 USCIRF Expresses Outrage at the Killing of U.S. Citizen Over Blasphemy Charges in Pakistan
USCIRF denounced the execution of five aid workers on July 19 in northeast Nigeria by the Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP), a Boko Haram faction. ISWAP militants claimed responsibility for the killings of these workers they had abducted last month. In a video, the fighters said that the executions were a warning to “all those being used by infidels to convert Muslims to Christianity.”
7/17/20: USCIRF Releases Report on the Anti-cult Movement and Religious Regulation in Russia and Central Asia
USCIRF today released the following report:
7/15/20: USCIRF Applauds Sudan’s Repeal of Apostasy Law through Passage of New Fundamental Rights and Freedoms Act
USCIRF welcomes the decision of Sudan’s transitional government to repeal its apostasy law by adopting the Fundamental Rights and Freedoms Act.
USCIRF decries the decision of Turkey’s Council of State (Danıştay), the country’s highest administrative court, to permit the conversion of the historic Hagia Sophia from its current status as a museum back into a mosque.