United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) – UPSC Prelims

  • USCIRF is a bipartisan, independent federal government commission in the US.
  • It was created by the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) of 1998.
  • USCIRF’s principal responsibilities are to review the facts and circumstances of violations of religious freedom internationally and to make policy recommendations to the President, the Secretary of State, and the Congress.
  • It gives and annual report of its findings.
  • It recommends :
    • Countries of particular concern (CPCs) : for engaging in or tolerating “systematic, ongoing, egregious violations.”
    • Entities of particular concern (EPCs) : non-state actors cited for similarly severe violations.
  • Why in news? US has designated India as country of particular concern for violation of religious freedom.