Nigeria’s federal government has stated its resolve to commence talks with the United States in its bid to have the country’s name struck off the US religious freedom violation blacklist.
The FG also rejected claims that it is suppressing the religious freedom of its citizens.
The spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ferdinand Nwonye stated that the engagement would give Nigeria the opportunity to be removed from the blacklist, as well as register its displeasure over being listed among countries that have a record of religious intolerance.
The statement is in response to the announce by the US that it had included Nigeria in its blacklist of countries with severe religious violations.
The US did not give reasons for its decision to blacklist Nigeria, its Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, who made the announcement, stated the US will continue to act when religious freedom is threatened.
Pompeo further stated that the US law stipulates such designations for nations that either engage in or tolerate “systematic, ongoing, egregious violations of religious freedom.”
Besides Nigeria, other nations affected include; Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, China, Iran, Eritrea, Myanmar, North Korea, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan.