Congress: An Int'l Push to Protect Religious Freedom | American Center for Law and Justice

By Jay Sekulow1308883144000

As you know, the ACLJ - along with our international affiliates - remains committed to working to ensure that religious freedom is protected here and around the globe. 

We report regularly about the dangers facing Christians who are often persecuted - even put to death in some circumstances - because of their faith - Christians who live in countries where Christianity is a minority religion.

That's exactly why we're focused on an important new bill before Congress, H.R. 1856, that protects freedom of religion.

In 1998, Congress passed the International Religious Freedom Act, which created the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF).  For the last 12 years, USCIRF has been dedicated to revealing religious persecution around the world and reporting to the U.S. Department of State and the President those countries of particular concern.

But without congressional action, the law creating USCIRF expires on September 30, 2011.  H.R. 1856 reauthorizes USCIRF for an additional seven years and corrects some of the provisions of the original Act that experience has revealed are ineffective in protecting religious liberties.

In a letter urging Congress to support this measure, we underscore exactly why these protections are needed:  "Freedom of religion is a cornerstone of any vibrant democratic society. Recent events around the world demonstrate that this cornerstone is under an ever-increasing threat." 

We cite problems in Pakistan, Indonesia, Turkey, Nigeria, and the Middle East.  It's estimated that 70 percent of the world's population live in countries with high or very high restrictions on religion.

Here's the problem.  Although USCIRF has recommended to the State Department several Countries of Particular Concern (CPC), those countries that are the worst violators of religious liberties, inaction by the State Department has been a persistent problem.

Under the Obama Administration, the State Department has failed to designate a single CPC. Likewise, the Obama Administration has failed to take specific actions against countries that continually violate religious freedoms.  H.R. 1856 addresses these problems by requiring the State Department to respond to USCIRF’s recommendations and requiring the President to report to Congress if he fails to take specific action against countries designated as CPCs. 

This accountability between the State Department, the President, and Congress reinforces the United States' commitment to religious liberties for all individuals. 

The House Foreign Affairs Committee has been looking into this issue and we've submitted a letter backing H.R. 1856.  Our letter urging Congress to approve this measure is posted here.

It's time for Congress to act and for the Obama Administration to identify the world's worst offenders and take specific actions against these countries.

 

Latest in
Constitution

The ACLJ Needed Now More Than Ever: The Constitution

By Jordan Sekulow1619445540000

The following is the final installment of a six-part series focusing on why the ACLJ is needed now more than ever to protect the victories we’ve achieved and beat back the ominous challenges we now face under the Biden Administration. At the ACLJ, we will always have a clear eyed view of the...

read more

President Trump Acquitted Again (Sekulow Recap)

By Jordan Sekulow1613425682715

The second impeachment trial of President Trump in the U.S. Senate has concluded, and just as we predicted, President Trump was acquitted . . . again. Today on Sekulow , we discussed the end of the Senate impeachment trial of President Trump. In a result that surprised no one, President Donald...

read more

Did House Impeachment Managers Falsify Evidence? (Sekulow Recap)

By Jordan Sekulow1613171494333

Did House impeachment managers actually falsify evidence of another private citizen during the impeachment trial? Today on Sekulow , we discussed this week in the Senate impeachment trial. Today, President Trump’s attorneys began their presentations. We’re on day four of the Senate impeachment...

read more

Day 3: How Much Longer Will the Impeachment Trial Last? (Recap)

By Jordan Sekulow1613081841323

The unconstitutional impeachment trial continues. How much longer will it last? Today on Sekulow , we discussed the Senate impeachment trial, as the House impeachment managers put on their full attack on President Trump, trying to make a connection between the President’s words and the horrific...

read more

American Center for Law and Justice | Washington D.C. | Copyright © 2021, ACLJ | Privacy & Security Policy | Annual Report

The ACLJ is an organization dedicated to the defense of constitutional liberties secured by law.

Visit ACLJ.org/help to submit a legal help request. All legal requests submitted via any other method cannot be answered.

Through our $1 Million Matching Challenge, all gifts will be doubled, dollar-for-dollar, up to the online daily total.

American Center for Law and Justice is a d/b/a for Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism, Inc., a tax-exempt, not-for-profit, religious corporation as defined under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, specifically dedicated to the ideal that religious freedom and freedom of speech are inalienable, God-given rights. The Center's purpose is to engage legal, legislative and cultural issues by implementing an effective strategy of advocacy, education and litigation to ensure that those rights are protected under the law. The organization has participated in numerous cases before the Supreme Court, Federal Court of Appeals, Federal District Courts, and various state courts regarding freedom of religion and freedom of speech. Your gift is very much appreciated and fully deductible as a charitable contribution. A copy of our latest financial report may be obtained by writing to us at P.O. Box 90555, Washington, DC 20090-0555.