United Nations: In a big embarrassment for China and its all-weather ally Pakistan, the two countries were slammed for gross violation of human rights and the alleged mistreatment of religious minorities during a crucial meeting on the issue at the United Nations.
During the UN Meet on Safety of Religious Minorities, the US, UK, and Canada expressed concern over the treatment of religious minorities in China and Pakistan.
The three countries also highlighted the discrimination suffered by the Uyghur community in China and of Christians, Ahmadis, Hindus and other minorities in Pakistan.
Addressing the UN meet, United States Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom, Sam Brownback said, “We remain deeply concerned about the Chinese government escalating widespread and undue restrictions on religious freedom in China. We urge the Chinese government to respect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of everyone in that nation.”
#WATCH United States, United Kingdom & Canada, at UN meet on Safety of Religious Minorities, in New York, slam Pakistan & China for discrimination against religious minorities. pic.twitter.com/tuSX5fTLls
— ANI (@ANI) August 23, 2019
Referring to China categorically, Brownback added, “Many members of religious groups in China – including ethnic Uighur, Kazakh, and other Muslims, Tibetan Buddhists, Catholics, Protestants, and Falun Gong – face severe persecution and repression, and we call on the Chinese government to end its war on faith and to respect religious freedom for all.”
Sam Brownback, US Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom, at UN meet on Safety of Religious Minorities, in New York: We urge the Chinese government to respect the human rights & fundamental freedoms of everyone in that nation. https://t.co/XR8ZmPgiqE
— ANI (@ANI) August 23, 2019
Shifting his focus on Pakistan, Brownback said, “In Pakistan, religious minorities continue to suffer from prosecution either at hands of non-state elements or through discriminatory laws and practices.”
United Kingdom Prime Minister’s Special Envoy on Freedom of Religion or Belief, Lord Ahmad also cornered both nations and spoke specifically on UK’s concerns over the condition of China’s Uyghurs and Christians in Pakistan. “In Pakistan, religious minorities continue to suffer from prosecution either at hands of non-state elements or through discriminatory laws and practices.”
“We must unequivocally call out attacks, whether directed at Christians in the middle east and elsewhere… a deepening crackdown on Uyghurs of China and other minorities,” said Canada’s envoy at the UN Meet held in New York.
US, UK, and Canada’s responses came after Naveed Walter, President of Human Rights Focus Pakistan, spoke at the UN meet and asserted that “a large number of people are marginalized in their own societies”
On this, US’ Sam Brownback said, “In Pakistan, religious minorities continue to suffer from prosecution either at hands of non-state elements or through discriminatory laws and practices.”
Meanwhile, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan will represent his country at the UN General Assembly next month, where he will address the world body on the Kashmir issue.
While China has been accused of oppressing the Uyghurs by sending them to mass detention camps, interfering in their religious activities and sending the community to undergo some form of forceful re-education or indoctrination, Pakistan has been accused of discriminating against its religious minorities which is manifested in various forms of targeted violence, mass murders, extrajudicial killings, abduction, rapes, forced conversion to Islam.
All this has made Hindus, Christians, Sikhs, Ahmadiyyas and Shias one of the most persecuted minorities in Pakistan.