The US Reports on International Religious Freedom: The Case of Turkey
Keywords:Uluslararası Din Özgürlüğü, Dini Azınlıklar, IRFA, İnsan Hakları, Sekülerizm
In recent years, promotion of religious freedom has been trending in international relations. The United States stands out as the champion of international religious freedom with enthusiastic American advocates who believe in religious freedom as the first freedom. This article examines American international religious freedom reports on Turkey by the US Office of International Religious Freedom and the US Commission on International Religious Freedom. The article starts with the introduction of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 that created the Office and the Commission. The article, then, analyses the reports on Turkey and argues that the reports blur the lines between religious freedom infringements and political debates on government support for the majority religion as well as the lines between isolated incidents hurting religious minorities and systematic violation of minority rights. This conflated approach in the reports suggest that there is a tacit promotion of American paradigm of secularism and religious fredom. Furthermore, the reports divide the society along the religious lines when narrating ‘socaial atitudes’ and ‘societal persecution’, which necessairly assumes religious diffrences as the main culprit while singling out the right to religious freedom at the zenith of human rights.
Yasalar and Diğer Resmi Belgeler
The International Religious Freedom Act of 1998, 22 USC 640
Congress Resolution 71, 104th Congress (1996)
H.R. Con. Res. 102, 104th Cong. (1996)
USCIRF Annual Report 2020
International Religious Freedom Report for 2019, United States Department of State
International Religious Freedom Report for 2011, United States Department of State
United States Policies in Support of Religious Freedom: Focus on Christians (July 22,1997) (accessed at US Department of State website: https://1997-2001.state.gov/global/human_rights/970722_relig_rpt_christian.html
Addentum to the Report of the United States Commision on International Religious Freedom, May 14 2001
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