Jun 28, 2024

USCIRF Releases New Report on Religious Freedom in Nicaragua

Washington, DC –The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) today released the following new report:

Nicaragua Country Update - This report provides an update on the severely deteriorating religious freedom conditions in Nicaragua. President Daniel Ortega and Vice President Rosario Murillo use laws on cybercrimes, financial crimes, legal registration for not-for-profit organizations, and sovereignty and self-determination to persecute religious communities and religious freedom advocates. Nicaragua’s government continues to repress the Catholic Church for its human rights advocacy by arbitrarily arresting, imprisoning, and exiling clergy and laypeople and shuttering and seizing the property of Catholic charitable and educational organizations. As Ortega and Murillo seek to maintain their hold on power, the authorities have been using similar tactics to oppress Protestant denominations. The Nicaraguan government has also resisted any international scrutiny of their religious freedom violations including by withdrawing from the Organization of American States (OAS), expelling OAS staff from its territory, and refusing to cooperate with the United Nation Group of Human Rights Experts on Nicaragua.

In its 2024 Annual Report, USCIRF recommended the U.S. Department of State designate the country as a “Country of Particular Concern,” or CPC, for engaging in systematic, ongoing, and egregious violations of religious freedom.


The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) is an independent, bipartisan federal government entity established by the U.S. Congress to monitor, analyze and report on religious freedom abroad. USCIRF makes foreign policy recommendations to the President, the Secretary of State and Congress intended to deter religious persecution and promote freedom of religion or belief. To interview a Commissioner, please contact USCIRF at [email protected].