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US religious freedom commission urges administration to promote religious freedom in Syria

Catholic World News - April 26, 2013

The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has issued a report that recounts violations of religious freedom in the strife-torn nation.

The report also calls upon the Obama administration to place greater emphasis on religious freedom in its dealings with the government and rebel forces.

Mary Ann Glendon, the Harvard law professor who also serves as president of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, joined two fellow commissioners in issuing a statement dissenting from the report.

“We have strong and deep feelings for the sufferings currently being endured by the people of Syria,” the three commissioners said. “We dissent from the report, however, because the facts about and the relation between issues of religious freedom and the political dynamics of the armed struggle there are not sufficiently clear to enable us to draw conclusions or make recommendations regarding matters that lie outside USCIRF’s mandate to monitor violations of religious freedom.”

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