Rashad Hussain spoke exclusively to GMA 3 about the role.
First Muslim ambassador for religious freedom discusses global struggle to end genocide
Rashad Hussain is the U.S. Ambassador at-Large to International Religious Freedom. He told GMA 3 that he felt it sent a strong signal to the rest of the world.
In December, Hussain was voted into the Senate with an 85-5 vote. Ten Senators didn’t vote. According to Hussain, the bipartisan support sent the message that the U.S. supports religious freedom for all.
“GMA” was informed by the ambassador that the White House is especially concerned about the unfolding genocide against Rohingya, an ethnic minority stateless Muslim group.
PHOTO: After being rescued by the Indonesian navy off the coast of Bireuen, Rohingya refugees are seen on a wooden boat in this file photo from December 31, 2021.
Antony Blinken, the U.S. Secretary-of-State, stated last month that attacks by Myanmar’s military on the Rohingya, an ethnic minority of Muslims, were genocide and crimes versus humanity. Five years ago, the government had killed over 9,000 Rohingyas and forced more than a million people into exile.
MORE: The US considers Myanmar’s atrocities against Rohingya ‘genocide’
Hussain stated that the U.S. had required all data and information to make the decision. It took a while. The move will provide greater assistance to the Gambia’s legal and the International Court of Justice, he said.
He stated, “We are sending a strong message that anyone who engages with these types of actions and crimes against humanity [and] Genocide, we will hold them responsible.” “We are also very clear that our goal is to stop these atrocities from happening.”
Hussain was previously President Barack Obama’s special representative to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. He said that he plans to implement the Marrakesh Declaration which advocates for protection of the rights of Christians in Muslim majority countries.
He stated, “That includes seeking out to end the use blasphemy and apostasy legislations.”
Ambassador said that the U.S. supports any religious group being persecuted.
He said, “One of the most profound aspects of our job is that it’s our responsibility, and which we take very seriously to wake up everyday and do all that we can for people who are in pain.”