WASHINGTON, DC – On Wednesday, August 14, 2019, the U.S. Department of State publicly designated Salah Abdalla Mohamed Mohamed Salih (Salah Gosh) of Sudan and his wife and daughter under Section 7031(c) of the FY 2019 Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, making them ineligible for entry into the United States. As former director of Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS), Gosh was responsible for the agency’s wide range of human rights abuses, including the repression of religious minorities.
A USCIRF delegation visited Khartoum and North Darfur states in May 2018 to learn about specific violations and barriers to religious freedom perpetrated both by state and non-state actors. The delegation met with a wide range of interlocutors, including Sudanese government officials, members of civil society, women’s rights activists, human rights defenders, religious leaders, representatives of religious minority communities, and journalists, among others.
USCIRF welcomed the State Department’s naming of “Countries of Particular Concern” (CPCs) for severe religious freedom violations. This group comprises nations that violate religious freedom in a “systematic, ongoing, egregious” manner and includes Burma, China, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.