Watch Summit 2021 Highlights!

Watch highlights by going to the the IRF Summit YouTube channel.

Washington D.C. — July 13-15, 2021


Watch Summit 2021 Highlights!

Watch Summit highlights by going to the IRF Summit YouTube channel.

Day 1

Tuesday, July 13

8:00 – 8:45 am

Congressional Advocacy Day Kick-Off Breakfast

Sponsored by Belmont House, 314 Independence Ave SE

2:00 – 7:00 pm

Registration open

4:00 – 6:30 pm

Exhibit Hall open

4:00 – 5:00 pm

Side Event – Group 1
  • Falun Dafa Association in Washington DC
  • Anglican Church In North America
  • The DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation
  • Indian American Muslim Council
  • Action Alliance to Redress 1219
  • One Korea Network

5:00 – 5:45 pm

In Solidarity with the Persecuted

Special Event on Capitol Hill for Congressional Advocacy Day (Limited Attendance Due To Capitol Restrictions.)

5:15 – 6:15 pm

Side Event – Group 2
  • The Center for International Religious Liberty at CUA Columbus School of Law 
  • China Coalition
  • A Demand for Action
  • Save the Persecuted Christians
  • Religious Freedom and Business Foundation

6:30 – 8:00 pm

Opening Reception

Hosted by Every Home for Christ


Day 2

Wednesday, July 14

7:15 – 8:45 am


Sponsored by the Barnabas Fund

Breakfast with Asia Bibi

Hear her testimony of persecution and triumph.

8:45 am – 6:15 pm

Exhibit Hall open during breaks

9:30 am – 12:00 pm

Morning Plenary Session
Big Surveillance and the Rise of Technology in Persecution

Keynote: Nancy Pelosi (invited)

Survivor Testimony: Tursunay Ziyawudun 

Panel: Henry Cuellar, Nury Turkel, Dan Nadel, Olivia Enos

Addressing Genocide: Preventing and Recovering from Religious Cleansing

Remarks: Chris Smith

Panel: Mark Green, Frank Wolf, Adlay Kejjan, Naomi Kikoler

Survivor Testimony: Nasrin Rasho 

Keynote: Mike Pompeo

Keynote Introduction: Adam Phillips

Keynote: Administrator Samantha Power (invited)

Refugee Protection

Survivor Testimony: Wai Wai Nu 

Keynote: Melisssa Rogers

Panel: Rita Stephan, Anurima Bhargava, Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah, Nina Shea

12:30 – 1:30 pm


Sponsored by Open Doors

Defending and Advancing Religious Freedom Globally: Perspectives from the Front Lines

1:00 – 2:30 pm

Private Event

Hosted by 1792 Exchange

Corporate Global Supply Chains:  Avoiding Entanglement and Protecting Freedom.

1:45 – 2:45 pm

Side Event, Group 3
  • BYU Law — International Center for Law and Religion Studies
  • International Christian Concern
  • For the Martyrs
  • Family Research Council
  • Uyghur Human Rights Project
  • Boat People SOS (BPSOS): Southeast Asia Working Group
  • Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations of North America (Virtual, from 5:15-6:15pm)

3:15 – 5:15 pm

Afternoon Plenary Session
Contextualizing IRF: The Founders of the Movement and Thought Leaders

Keynote: Secretary of State Tony Blinken (invited)

Panel: Imam Magid, David Saperstein, Tom Farr, David Curry

The Role of Philanthropy in International Religious Freedom
Panel: Zeenat Rahman, Farhan Latif, James Chen, Tina Ramirez, Eric Patterson
Legal Structures of Persecution and Religious Discrimination

Survivor Testimony: Asia Bibi

Keynote: Archbishop Warda,

Keynote: Armenian Orthodox Archbishop Aykazian

Panel: Ro Khana, Amjad Mahmood Khan Bob Fu, John Marsh, Knox Thames

6:30 – 7:30 pm

Ecumencial Christian Prayer Service

Sponsored by In Defense of Christians at Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral

6:30 – 8:00 pm


Sponsored by ADF

Highlighting Rising Persecution in Nigeria, featuring high-level government and religious actors, as well as civil society leaders from Nigeria

8:30 – 10:30 pm

Social Hour

Sponsored by Philos Project at Lebanese Taverna

Day 3

Thursday, July 15

8:15 – 11:30 am

Morning Plenary Session
IRF in Economy, National Security, and Accountability

Survivor Testimony: Joy Bishara

Keynote speaker: Ingrid Vanderveldt

Keynote speaker: Sat Bachan Anthony

Panel: Chris Coons, James Lankford

The Rising Tide of Religious Nationalism

Survivor Testimony: Andrew Brunson

Keynote: Archbishop Elpidophoros and Yahya Cholil Staquf

Panel: Archbishop Angaelos, Nadine Maenza, Tony Perkins 

IRF Secretariat Segment: Governments and Frameworks that Advance Religious Freedom

Keynote: Wade Kusack and Yerzhan Nukezhanov 

Keynote: Cash Luna

Panel: Jan Figal, Tristan Azebj, Greg Mitchell

12:30 – 4:00 pm

Exhibit Hall open

12:30 – 1:45 pm


Sponsored by Family Research Council

Sanctioned by China: Hearing from high-level U.S. government officials and Chinese victims of religious persecution.

2:00 – 3:00 pm

Side Event, Group 4
  • Barnabas Aid
  • IRF Roundtable
  • Religious Freedom Institute 
  • China Aid Association
  • The Philos Project
  • ADF International: IRF Young Leaders

3:15 – 4:15 pm

Side Event, Group 5
  • IRF Secretariat
  • Hindu American Foundation
  • Presbyterian Church of Taiwan
  • G20 Interfaith Forum
  • In Defense of Christians
  • Office of Tibet in DC

4:30 – 5:30 pm

Side Event, Group 6
  • Abolish Anti-conversion laws and Apostasy Penalties Coalition
  • Hudson Institute’s Working Group on Christians & Religious Pluralism in the Middle East
  • Religious Freedom Coalition
  • Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA
  • HIAS
  • Bruderhof

6:00 – 6:30 pm

General Reception

Light hors d’oeuvres

Hosted by Alexandre Law Firm

6:45 – 9:45 pm

Closing Dinner
Hope for the Future: Civil Society and American Global and Multilateral Leadership

Keynotes: Cardinal Dolan

Keynote Conversation: Grace Gao, Mariam Ibraheem, Irene Weiss, Ensaf Haider, Tracy Sabol

Presentation of IRF Hero Awards