Earlier this evening, with bipartisan support, the United States Senate confirmed Rashad Hussain as Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom. MPAC congratulates Ambassador Hussain for becoming the first Muslim to be confirmed for this prestigious and pivotal position in the U.S. State Department. His confirmation affirms our nation’s commitment to enriching American pluralism and advancing religious freedom worldwide.
Ambassador Rashad Hussain will be transitioning out of his current role as Director for Partnerships and Global Engagement at the National Security Council to take on his ambassadorship. Mr. Hussain will be coming into this position with nearly 15 years of experience as a public affairs expert, having worked in all three branches in the government as an attorney and a diplomat, including as Senior Counsel at the Department of Justice’s National Security Division and as President Obama’s Special Envoy to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). While he was with the State Department, Mr. Hussain engaged civil society leaders to develop the Marrakesh Declaration to protect religious minorities in Muslim-majority countries.
With his unwavering commitment to national security and countering terrorist propaganda used to target religious minorities, Ambassador Hussain is well-equipped to defend international religious freedom globally. We are confident that he will leverage existing U.S. relationships with Muslim-majority countries to ensure religious minorities are protected and hold accountable countries like China, who continue to persecute their Muslim minority populations.
“Rashad has served our community and country at the highest level of integrity and intelligence. We look forward to working with him in advancing religious freedom under his leadership. Above all, he has served as a mentor and role model to Americans of all backgrounds, sharing with them the importance of public service and serving our country.”
— Salam Al-Marayati, MPAC President
MPAC is proud to have partnered with a diverse coalition of American Muslim organizations to usher in greater representation of our community in the federal government. We are even prouder that Rashad Hussain began his career in public policy as an intern with Congressman Richard Gephardt as a result of his work with our office.
We commend the United States Senate for confirming an American Muslim to this senior-level diplomatic position and affirming the strength of our nation’s pluralism and diversity. America was founded on the principles of freedom of religion and expression. Ambassador Hussain’s confirmation not only advances those principles at home, but it also brings hope for the revival of those principles worldwide.
We look forward to American Muslims participating in all branches of the government with the support of the Biden administration. MPAC continues its efforts to engage the government, civil society, and the American Muslim and interfaith communities to achieve this goal.