10/25/2021 United States (International Christian Concern) – International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations will hear from Rashad Hussain, who the Biden administration nominated to serve as the next ambassador-at-large for International Religious Freedom. The post was previously held by Ambassador Sam Brownback under President Trump.
The agenda for the hearing will include several other nominations and will be closed to in-person viewers. It will be made available for online viewing.
Rashad is a Muslim of Indian American descent and would be the first Muslim to hold the position if confirmed.
In July, the Biden administration announced its nomination for Hussain, a diplomat serving as the Director for Partnerships and Global Engagement at the National Security Council. He has an extensive history in government, including as Senior Counsel at the Department of Justice’s National Security Division during the Obama administration. He also served as U.S. Special Envoy to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, U.S. Special Envoy for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications, and Deputy Associate White House Counsel.
During the Trump administration, Ambassador Brownback began several new initiatives that energized the global religious freedom movement like never before. These initiatives included launching the International Religious Freedom Alliance as well as the annual Ministerial to Advance International Religious Freedom hosted by the Department of State, which has now moved to be hosted by partnering governments around the world.
Ambassador Brownback also motivated many civil society organizations working to advance international religious freedom. His almost weekly attendance at the International Religious Freedom Roundtable, an informal weekly meeting with civil society leaders and victims of persecution, gave a much-needed audience to a community passionate about advancing IRF for all faiths across the world.
Matias Perttula, Director of Advocacy at International Christian Concern said, “ICC welcomes the nomination of Rashad Hussain to potentially serve as the new Ambassador-At-Large for International Religious Freedom. We sincerely hope to see his leadership continue the work of his predecessor in ensuring that everyone around the world has the freedom to live by their chosen faith convictions throughout life. The United States must guard this right not just for its own citizens but also for those around the world who are denied this freedom. Christians are the most persecuted faith group in the world, and we hope that Mr. Hussain will advocate for their freedoms and liberties in countries like Pakistan, India, Nigeria, and elsewhere regardless of whether they were born into a Christian family or decided to follow Jesus later in life.”
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