US and Canada

India rejects ‘Biased’ USCIRF Report on situation of Religious Freedom in country

New Delhi, INDIA: India has denounced the biased comments against India made by United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) in its annual report, that for another time, proposed to embargo the Indian capital New Delhi. As the Indian Ministry of External Affairs stated, the manipulative representation of the situation of Religious Freedom in India would certainly degrade the credibility of the USCIRF.

Arindam Bagchi, the Spokesperson of the Ministry of external affairs, urged USCIRF to first learn about India’s plurality and democratic foundation and restrain from making any baseless statements about the country. 

The response came after the US Federal Commission urged President Biden for the imposition of sanctions on the Indian Government Agencies for violation of the right to freedom of religion.

The USCIRF report also expressed its concern over the worsening conditions of religious freedom in countries like Iran, where according to Chair of Commission Nury Turkel, the authorities indulge in illegally harassing and arresting the protesters peacefully protesting against the Hijab Laws, which exemplifies the country’s efforts in repressing the religious freedom of the nation.

Adding further, Turkel stated that USCIRF’s autonomy and bipartisanship add to its ability to identify threats to religious freedom in other nations. The Annual Report of 2023 identified 17 countries, which it named Countries of Particular Concern (CPCs), to the State Department of Designation as their governments tend not to act against egregious violations. 

Although 12 countries in this list are the same as in 2022 reports, five new nations have been added, which include Afghanistan, India, Nigeria, Syria, and Vietnam.

“We strongly urge the Biden administration to implement USCIRF’s recommendations–in particular, to designate the countries recommended as CPCs. We also urge Congress to prohibit any person from receiving compensation for lobbying on behalf of foreign adversaries, including those engaging in particularly severe violations of the right to freedom of religion or belief,stated Turkel.


Zurab Kvaratskhelia

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