Pakistan’s tattered Christians along with their supporters staged a protest outside the UN Headquarters, demanding protection in their own homeland and help for their stranded fellow believers seeking asylum in Thailand.
Following deadly bombing in Lahore; where terrorists had targeted Pakistani Christians, a protest was staged outside the United Nations’ Headquarter in New York. Protesters which included the Pakistani Christians and their supporters united in raising their voice as one in demanding better safety and security for Christians living in Pakistan. They demanded more protection for religious minorities in the country. They even demanded effective steps to be taken in order to resolve the problems of the Pakistani Christians who are seeking asylum in Thailand. About 50 people, who had staged this protest included non-Pakistani Americans.
This protest was staged on Tuesday, April 5. One of the organizers of this protest Tariq Javaid – President of the International Community Care Foundation, said that Pakistan’s Christians have already been living in a situation of constant threat; whether it is the blasphemy law I the country’s constitution or the terrorists targeting the Christians. He added that the extremist mentality of the politicians and leaders has played an instrumental role in fanning the religious hatred in the country.
He went on to say that the UN and the United States should firmly endeavor to limit the ongoing persecution of Christians in Pakistan. He said, “Islamabad should be made to take measures to provide security and protection to Christians in the light of recent terrorist attacks and continual religious persecution.”
Furthermore, he said that nearly 4,000 Pakistani Christians are left stranded in Thailand, as they had fled to Thailand fleeing religious persecution in Pakistan. At the moment about 500 Pakistani Christians have been hooked and kept in notorious detention centers where they are sending their days and nights in tormenting conditions. What is more they are not being treated as “asylum-seekers.” “Eleven of them have died so far in detention,” he added.
He earnestly appealed to the UN and its High Commissioner for Refugees to get involved in this matter and to make sure that those Pakistani Christians who are in Thai detention centers are released while their arrangements should be made for their resettlement elsewhere.
While another Pakistani Christian protester Wilson Chowdhury- Chairperson of the British Pakistani Christian Association (BPCA) asserted that if the Pakistani Christians seeking asylum in Thailand are deported, they would certainly be facing persecution at the hands of the government and aggressive vengeance from extremists. He claimed that the anti-blasphemy laws are being misused as a legal pretext to attack Pakistan’s Christians.