“There is no justification for the State Department's failure to recognize Nigeria or India as gross violators of religious freedom, as they each clearly meet the legal standards for CPC designation. »
Each year, in accordance with the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) of 1998, the US President reviews the status of religious freedom around the world and lists countries whose governments have committed or tolerated "particularly serious violations of religious freedom”. At the end of this examination, lists are drawn up, namely the special watch list, the list of countries of particular concern and the list of entities of particular concern.
On November 30, the US State Department published these lists. The Secretary of State placed Burma, People's Republic of China, Cuba, Eritrea, Iran, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan on the list of countries of particular concern. It placed Algeria, Central African Republic, Comoros and Vietnam on the special watch list. He finally placed Al-Shabaab, Boko Haram, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, the Houthis, ISIS-Sahel (formerly known as ISIS-Greater Sahara), ISIS-West Africa, Jamaat Nasr al-Islam wal Muslimin, the Taliban and the Wagner Group based on its actions in the Central African Republic in the list of entities of particular concern.
Among the notable absentees from these lists, Nigeria and India. The USCIRF, the American commission on international religious freedom, is indignant at this, as evidenced by the words of its director, Nury Turkel, who denounces a "failure of the State Department".
“There is no justification for the State Department's failure to recognize Nigeria or India as gross violators of religious freedom, as they each clearly meet the legal standards for CPC designation. USCIRF is extremely disappointed that the Secretary of State has failed to implement our recommendations and acknowledge the seriousness of the religious freedom violations that USCIRF and the Department of State have documented in these countries. . The State Department's own reports include numerous examples of particularly serious violations of religious freedom in Nigeria and India. »
Another disappointment revealed by the vice-president of the USCIRF, Abraham Cooper, the absence of Afghanistan in this same list, although the Taliban are placed in the list of entities of particular concern.
“USCIRF is disappointed that the Department of State did not include Afghanistan as a CPC this year. Although he rebranded the Taliban as an 'Entity of Particular Concern', or EPC, this does not reflect the reality that the group is the country's de facto government. »