In July, the EU deployed an election observation mission to Pakistan that later issued a report highlighting significant curtailment of freedom of expression, allegations of interference in the electoral process by the military-led establishment, and politicization of the judiciary. In June, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released the first-ever report by the United Nations on human rights in Kashmir. Durrani survived. The Taliban and affiliated armed groups continued to attack schools and use children in suicide bombings in 2018. In May, Aasia Bibi, a Christian woman who had spent eight years on death row for blasphemy, was released and allowed to rejoin her family in Canada. On April 23 and April 24, police officers protecting polio workers were gunned down in Khyber Pakhtukhwa. Pakistani activists estimate that there are about 1,000 “honor” killings every year. However, witness accounts suggest that the police fired indiscriminately at the family’s car. The police officials involved were arrested and face murder charges. االسلام عليڪم اسين سڀ ملي جھلي ڪري ڪنھن به مزلوم جي مدد ڪيون انساني حق بڻجي ٿو خداجي راھ ۾ انسان جي مدد ڪيو During counterterrorism operations, Pakistani security forces often are responsible for serious human rights violations including torture, enforced disappearances, detention without charge, and extrajudicial killings, according to Pakistan human rights defenders and defense lawyers. Pakistan and China deepened extensive economic and political ties in 2019, and work continued on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a project consisting of construction of roads, railways, and energy pipelines. The Security Council held a closed-door discussion on the issue at the request of Pakistan and the backing of China. Punjab police ordered an inquiry. At least 77 girls and 79 boys were raped or sexually assaulted in the first half of 2018, according to police reports, but none of the suspects had been convicted at time of writing and all had been released on bail. The court said that a person with psychosocial disabilities cannot be executed. Limiting Beijing’s Influence Over Accountability and Justice, Convincing “Middle Powers” to Fight Autocrats Despite High Costs, Time to Re-Energize the “Never Again” Movement, Human Judgment and Responsibility in the Age of Technology, Helping Older People Stay Connected, and at Home, Changing the Terms of Engagement with Silicon Valley. BAP politician Nawabzada Siraj Raisani was killed in the attack. Human rights violations in the Balochistan province of Pakistan have drawn concern in the international community, being described by Human Rights Watch (HRW) as having reached epidemic proportions. On the same day, a suicide attack claimed by ISIS in Orakzai tribal district killed at least 33 people. 570 likes. Groups supporting the blasphemy law took to the streets to protest the decision of Aasia’s release, damaged public and private property, and threatened judges of the Supreme Court, government officials, and military leadership with violent reprisals. Journalists increasingly practiced self-censorship in 2018, after threats and attacks from militant groups. Pakistan has more than 4,600 prisoners on death row, one of the world’s largest populations facing execution. The same day, four people were killed and at least 32 injured, when the convoy of Akram Khan Durrani, a senior political leader of Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA), was targeted in a remote-controlled blast in Bannu district, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. The Pakistani government rejected a large number of key recommendations that states made to it during the UPR. Human Rights Watch received several credible reports of intimidation, harassment, and surveillance of various NGOs by government authorities in 2018. In August, militants attacked and burned down at least 12 schools in Diamer district of Pakistan’s Gilgit-Baltistan region. They also carried out unlawful attacks targeting civilians. It also attempted to get support for a resolution on Kashmir at the UN Human Rights Council. Human Rights Watch - Pakistan Reports, background briefings, testimony, press releases and commentary on the human rights situation in the country View Detail South Asia Earthquake Relief A climate of fear continues to impede media coverage of abuses both by government security forces and militant groups. In some cases, regulatory agencies blocked cable operators from broadcasting networks that aired critical programs. Each accused the other of initiating the clash at a military checkpoint at Khar Kamar. The militant group Baloch Liberation Army claimed responsibility for the attack. However, strikes primarily targeting law enforcement officials and religious minorities killed hundreds of people. The Taliban and other armed militants killed and injured hundreds of people in a failed effort to disrupt the elections. Postive Push. Pakistani journalists attend a candlelight vigil to observe World Press Freedom Day on May 3, 2019, in Karachi, Pakistan. On the same night, Asad Kharal, a broadcast journalist, was assaulted and injured in Lahore. The Sindh provincial cabinet approved a new law in August providing the right of women agricultural workers to have a written contract, minimum wage, welfare benefits, and gender parity in wages. Christians and other religious minorities, as well as vulnerable and defenceless people in Pakistan, have been called to observe a "Black Day for Human Rights" across Pakistan on Human Rights Day, December 10, in protest against the increasing number of violence and violations of their inalienable rights. On September 1, Saluhddin Ayubi in Rahim Yar Khan district, Punjab was arrested for robbing a cash machine and soon died in custody. In September, the new Imran Khan government appointed Atif Mian, a prominent academic belonging to the Ahmadiyya community, to join the government as economic adviser and then, almost immediately after, asked him to step down after the TLP and other Islamist groups objected to his appointment because of his religion. The government continues to muzzle dissenting voices in nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and media on the pretext of national security. Members of the Pashtun Tahhaffuz Movement (PTM) held protests demanding accountability for extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances. In May, a mob led by anti-blasphemy clerics attacked and destroyed two historic Ahmadiyya religious buildings. On July 10, Haroon Bilour, a senior leader of the Awami National Party (ANP), was killed along with at least 20 others in a suicide bombing targeting his election meeting in Peshawar, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. Human Rights Watch defends the rights of people in 90 countries worldwide, spotlighting abuses and bringing perpetrators to justice, Human Rights Watch is a 501(C)(3) nonprofit registered in the US under EIN: 13-2875808, Freedom of Expression and Attacks on Civil Society, Terrorism, Counterterrorism, and Law Enforcement Abuses, Two Years After #MeToo Erupts, A New Treaty Anchors Workplace Shifts, Holding Companies to Account: Momentum Builds for Corporate Human Rights Duties, As Killer Robots Loom, Demands Grow to Keep Humans in Control of Use of Force, Shutting Down the Internet to Shut Up Critics, With Millions Out of School, the Countdown Begins to Get All Children into Quality, Accessible Education, Going to the Bank for Food, Not Money: The Growing Reality of Hunger in “Rich” Countries. In a major development, Pakistan's parliament in May, passed a law guaranteeing basic rights for transgender citizens and outlawing discrimination by employers. In August, in an important enforcement of laws to prosecute so-called “honor killings,” the parents of Qandeel Baloch, a Pakistani social media celebrity who was murdered by her brothers in July 2016, were denied their request to “pardon” the perpetrators. They were effectively excluded from participating in the 2018 parliamentary elections: to vote, Ahmadis are required to declare they are not Muslims, which many see as a renunciation of their faith. In March, the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted the outcome of Pakistan’s third Universal Periodic Review (UPR), which was conducted in November 2017. ... More than 10 cases of child abuse are reported daily in Pakistan. A spate of attacks in April resulted in the government temporarily suspending the polio immunization campaign throughout the country. Women from religious minority communities remain particularly vulnerable to abuse. Imran Ali was executed on October 17. HUMAN Rights WATCH Pakistan, Islamabad, Pakistan. Illiteracy and ignorance of their rights is the main reason for the prevailing violation of human rights in the Country. Women, religious minorities, and transgender people face violent attacks, discrimination, and government persecution, with authorities failing to provide adequate protection or hold perpetrators accountable. Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Human Rights: ‘Macron is doing to Muslims what the Nazis ( AND ISLAM) did to the Jews’ Grand Mufti of Jerusalem commanded 3 volunteer islamic Waffen SS Divisions to help Hitler murdering Bosnian and Serbian Jews and Christians. In April, a tailor in Taxila, Punjab, was arrested after local traders and religious leaders accused him of blasphemy. Human Rights Watch says new law, nationwide verification process threaten citizenship rights of millions of Muslims. They face increasing social discrimination as militant groups and the Islamist political party Tehreek-e-Labbaik (TLP) accuse them of “posing as Muslims.” The Pakistan penal code continues to treat “posing as Muslims” by Ahamdis as a criminal offense. In the campaign, Khan pledged to make economic development and social justice a priority. According to media reports, at least 66 women were murdered in Faisalabad district in the first six months of 2018, the majority in the name of “honor.”. Early marriage remains a serious problem, with 21 percent of girls in Pakistan marrying before the age of 18, according to UNICEF. Zainab Ansari was among the dozen children to be murdered in Kasur district, Punjab in 2018. On January 19, the police in Sahiwal district, Punjab killed four members of a single family including a teenage girl in an operation police claimed was targeting a militant leader. Parliament passed a comprehensive transgender rights bill in 2018. The Tehrik-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Al Qaeda, and their affiliates carried out suicide bombings and other indiscriminate attacks against security personnel that caused hundreds of civilian deaths and injuries during the year. Authorities do not allow independent monitoring of trials in military courts and many defendants are denied the right to a fair trial. Pakistan’s penal code criminalizes same-sex sexual conduct, placing men who have sex with men and transgender women at risk of police abuse, and other violence and discrimination. In July, police in Sahiwal district, Punjab, found the bodies of two transgender women who had been tortured to death. The report noted that human rights abuses in Pakistani Kashmir were of a “different caliber or magnitude” to those in Indian Kashmir and included misuse of anti-terrorism laws to target dissent, and restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression and opinion, peaceful assembly, and association. Hundreds have been arrested over blasphemy allegations, most of them members of religious minorities. Women, religious minorities, and transgender people continued to face violence, discrimination, and persecution, with authorities often failing to provide adequate protection or hold perpetrators accountable. Several opposition leaders, including former heads of state and cabinet ministers, were arrested over corruption allegations. In 2015, police identified a gang of child sex abusers in the same district. However, in September 2017, it led Organisation for Islamic Cooperation member stat… Although Prime Minister Imran Khan pledged to make social justice a priority after taking office in July 2018, his administration has increased restrictions on media, the political opposition, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). In August, the national assembly’s standing committee on law and justice rejected a bill proposing to fix the minimum age of marriage of girls at 18. The Pakistani government did not amend or repeal blasphemy law provisions that provide a pretext for violence against religious minorities, as well as arbitrary arrests and prosecution. Human Rights Watch Pakistan, Daraza. The law marked the first time that Pakistan recognized the right of women agricultural workers to unionize. The TTP and other Islamist militant groups carried out violent attacks on healthcare workers involved in providing grassroots services and polio immunization. On May 12, after militants attacked a hotel in Gwadar, Balochistan, killing 5 people, the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) claimed responsibility. The government cracked down on members and supporters of political parties. In response to such threats and attacks, journalists increasingly practice self-censorship. Razi was subsequently released. According to local groups, at least 65 transgender women have been killed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province since 2015. On July 13, in one of the most deadly suicide bombings in Pakistan’s history, at least 128 people were killed during an election rally held by the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) in Mastung district, Balochistan. In May, then-Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal was shot in an assassination attempt by an individual affiliated with an anti-blasphemy group at an election rally in Narowal district, Punjab. Atif Mian said he stepped down because of “adverse pressure regarding my appointment from the mullahs and their supporters.”. Early marriage remains a serious problem, with 21 percent of girls in Pakistan marrying before the age of 18, and 3 percent marrying before age 15. Those on death row are often from the most marginalized sections of society. In June, the murder of 19-year-old Mahwish Arshad in Faisalabad district, Punjab, for refusing a marriage proposal gained national attention. In January, the European Union’s High Representative Federica Mogherini welcomed the release of Aasia Bibi, calling on Pakistani authorities to ensure her safety and that of her family. On July 21, nine people including six policemen were killed in two attacks in Dera Ismail Khan district, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. In May, riots erupted in Mirpurkhas, Sindh, after a Hindu veterinary doctor was accused of blasphemy for allegedly providing medicines wrapped in paper printed with Islamic verses. In February, Patras Masih, 18, and Sajid Masih, 24, were charged with blasphemy in Lahore. Human Rights Watch research found girls miss school for reasons including, lack of schools, costs associated with studying, child marriage, harmful child labor, and gender discrimination. THIS IS ORGANIZATION HELP THE NEEDFULL PEOPLES OF PAKISTAN PROVIDE THEM LEGAL HELP AND ADVOCACY CURRENT ISSUE'S 2.7M likes. Human Rights Watch is one of the world’s leading independent organizations dedicated to defending and protecting human rights. Sajid Masih alleged that the police torture he endured while being held led him to attempt suicide, by jumping out of the interrogation room window. According to the organization Sahil, more than 10 cases of child sexual abuse are reported daily across Pakistan. In January, the rape and murder of 7-year-old Zainab Ansari in Kasur, Punjab, led to nationwide outrage and prompted the government to promise action. On July 9, the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) blocked three television news channels—Capital TV, 24 News HD, and Abbtakk News Network—after they broadcast speeches of opposition leaders. Pakistan has not banned the use of schools for military purposes, or endorsed the Safe Schools Declaration as recommended by the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in 2017. Zaman was released after three days. After months in hiding, Ismail fled to the US, where she sought asylum. 55 likes. Those on death row are often from the most marginalized sections of society. Since Pakistan was elected to the Human Rights Council in 2017, it has generally failed to take a strong stance on serious human rights situations. The Pakistan Supreme Court had acquitted Aasia in October 2018, but she had remained in custody due to nationwide protests by religious groups. On July 1, PEMRA terminated a live interview with former President Asif Ali Zardari on GEO TV shortly after it began. The government has done little to stop such forced marriages. Pakistan-based Islamist militant group Jaish-e-Mohammed claimed responsibility for the attack. On April 30, two unidentified assailants killed a female polio worker in Chaman, Balochistan. In May, an estimated 1,500 farmers walked 140 km from the Indus Delta region to Thatta, Sindh, demanding that the government d… PAKISTAN 2 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2019 United States Department of State • Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor of laws criminalizing consensual same-sex sexual conduct between adults; and the use of forced or compulsory child labor. KARACHI: Minority rights and a look at the history and future of human rights in Pakistan were the main topic of the discussion during an online interactive dialogue titled ‘Human Rights Vision 2020 & Beyond’ on Wednesday. Prime Minister Khan visited the United States, the country’s largest development and military donor, in July, during which he pledged to facilitate the Afghan peace process. Taliban and other militant groups targeted candidates and their supporters in the lead-up to the July election. Pakistan’s media operated in a climate of fear that impeded coverage of abuses by both government security forces and extremist armed groups. Scores of civilians were killed in attacks by the Pakistani Taliban, Al Qaeda, and other armed groups. GEO TV, a private television channel, was forced off the air or had its audience’s access restricted as punishment for editorials criticizing the government. A report by the Movement for Solidarity and Peace in Pakistan found that at least 1,000 girls belonging to Christian and Hindu communities are forced to marry Muslim men every year. In July, the Supreme Court of Pakistan held that in cases of acid attacks, a mercy petition filed by the victim forgiving the perpetrator cannot be allowed because it constitutes “extreme cruelty.”. Blasphemy allegations and related rhetoric from both private actors and officials increased in 2018. On August 8, the body of a 5-year-old girl who was raped and murdered was found in Mardan district, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. His family claimed Ayubi, who had a mental health condition, had been tortured to death by the police. On June 16, Muhammad Bilal Khan, a freelance journalist who ran a popular YouTube channel covering politics, was stabbed to death in Islamabad. Members of the Ahmadiyya religious community continue to be a major target for prosecutions under blasphemy laws, as well as specific anti-Ahmadi laws across Pakistan. Child sexual abuse remains common. The government used its “Regulation of INGOs in Pakistan” policy to impede the registration and functioning of international humanitarian and human rights groups. Three human rights organizations—the Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, International Commission of Jurists—on Thursday called on the Government of Pakistan to probe a recent surge in attacks on Ahmadis and to take prompt action to protect their rights. Pakistani law mandates capital punishment for 28 offenses, including murder, rape, treason, certain acts of terrorism, and blasphemy. A forensic report subsequently corroborated the torture claims. Despite high levels of domestic violence, the parliament has failed to enact laws to prevent it and protect women." Press release HRCP elects new council Demands that state improve its human rights record Lahore, 9 November. Amnesty International, International Commission of Jurists, Human Rights Watch issue joint statement. According to the local group Trans Action, 479 attacks against transgender women were reported in Khyber-Pakhunkhwa province in 2018. It was the second consecutive constitutional transfer of power from one civilian government to another in Pakistan. Pakistani law enforcement agencies were responsible for human rights violations, including detention without charge and extrajudicial killings. The military tightened its control over the economy, foreign policy and national security, shrinking space for civil society to promote and defend human rights. Child sexual abuse remains disturbingly common in Pakistan with 141 cases reported in just Lahore, Punjab, in the first six months of 2018. On concluding its 34th Annual General Meeting (AGM), the general body of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has called on the state to improve its human rights record—in particular to protect freedom of expression and to […] Kadafi Zaman, a Norwegian journalist, was arrested by police in July while covering a political rally and was beaten up. Pakistan has more than 8,000 prisoners on death row, one of the world’s largest populations facing execution. Violence against women and girls—including rape, so-called honor killings, acid attacks, domestic violence, and forced marriage—remains a serious problem. Over 5 million primary school-age children in Pakistan are out of school, most of them girls. Human Rights Watch research found girls miss school for reasons including lack of schools, costs associated with studying, child bearing, and gender discrimination. Suicide bombings, armed attacks, and killings by the Taliban, Al-Qaeda, and their affiliates targeted religious minorities, security personnel, and politicians, resulting in hundreds of deaths. Violence against transgender and intersex women in Pakistan continues. Gul Bukhari, a journalist in Lahore, was abducted in June by unknown assailants and released after a few hours. Attacks by Islamist militants resulted in fewer deaths in Pakistan in 2018 than in recent years. In August, the Punjab anti-corruption department accused police officers in Lahore of keeping suspects in a secret detention cell and torturing them. Saroop Ijaz, senior counsel, Asia division, Human Rights Watch, said that people have replicated the faith-based class system in Pakistan. However, very few cases of honor killings were prosecuted. Justice Tahira Safdar was appointed as the chief justice of Balochistan High Court, becoming the first woman ever appointed chief justice of a high court in Pakistan. Human Rights Watch, New York, New York. Most of those facing blasphemy allegations are members of religious minorities. Human Rights Watch received several credible reports of intimidation, harassment, and surveillance of various NGOs by government authorities. At least half were girls’ schools. In January, a transgender woman was killed in Karak, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa after being attacked on her way back from a music concert. "Pakistan’s government intensified its clampdown on the media, political opposition, and nongovernmental organizations in 2019,” the group Human Rights Watch said … Despite the many downfalls on human rights for women, there was an increase of 3.8 million women able to vote in the most recent election compared to 2013. On June 12, the Supreme Court upheld the convictions of Imran Ali for the rape and murder of Zainab Ansari and at least eight other girls. The event was organized by Ziauddin University (ZU) in connection with the International Human Rights Day. At least four transgender women were killed there in 2018, and at least 57 have been killed there since 2015. By Vatican News. However, in September 2017, it led Organisation for Islamic Cooperation member states at the council in expressing concerns about the ethnic cleansing campaign against the Rohingya by the Myanmar military. Their work has led to significant change. Pakistan and China deepened extensive economic and political ties in 2018, and work continued on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a project consisting of construction of roads, railways, and energy pipelines. In a … At least 17 people remain on death row in Pakistan after being convicted under the draconian blasphemy law, and hundreds await trial. 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