Washington, DC – Today, the White House announced the appointment of Khizr Khan to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom and the nomination of Rashad Hussain as U.S. Ambassador-at-large for International Religious Freedom.
The following is a statement from Madihha Ahussain, Muslim Advocates’ senior policy counsel:
“We applaud President Biden for choosing two superlatively qualified American Muslim leaders to serve in his administration.
Both Khizr Khan’s appointment and Rashad Hussain’s nomination send a powerful message to American Muslims and to the world about the importance of protecting religious freedom for all.
For too long, American Muslims have been locked out of these conversations and these positions. After four years of the Muslim Ban and decades of threats, violence and bigotry, it’s inspiring to see such respected leaders serving the nation in this way.
With these selections, President Biden has taken a step towards fulfilling the promise he made to Muslim Advocates during last year’s virtual gala, to make his administration look like America with ‘Muslim Americans serving at every level.’
We are excited to see such a bold contrast with the dark days of the last administration, which appointed anti-Muslim bigots to positions that were supposed to champion religious freedom. However, as our transition memo to the White House notes, we still have a lot more work to do to achieve representation for American Muslims ‘at every level,’ including appointments to the federal judiciary and in the president’s cabinet.
Today, however, we celebrate the progress we’ve made with the selection of these two impressive individuals. We urge the Senate to confirm Rashad Hussain in a process affording him the respect that he and his outstanding qualifications deserve.”