22 August 2021
INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY MUST PAY ATTENTION STATE-SPONSORED PERSECUTION OF AHMADI MUSLIMS IN PAKISTAN AND WORLDWIDE
On 13 July 2021(1), UN human rights experts have expressed their deep concern over the lack of attention to the serious human rights violations perpetrated against the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community around the world and called on the international community to step up efforts in bringing an end to the ongoing persecution of Ahmadi Muslims as follows:
“It is of the utmost importance to shed light on the persistent human rights violations and the rising acts of discrimination against the Ahmadi Muslims worldwide, which we find deeply worrying,” the experts said. “
“We call on the international community to be vigilant and to undertake coordinated action to respond to the violations faced by the Ahmadi Muslims around the world, particularly in countries where their lives are most at risk.”
We join the Experts(2) who in their statement strongly urge all States to:
- Repeal all laws that discriminate against Ahmadi Muslims, including laws that curtail their right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief, opinion and expression, offline and online, and amend them in accordance with international human rights standards;
- In particular, repeal all blasphemy laws or at least, amend them in compliance with the strict requirements of the ICCPR and its articles 2, 19 and 26;
- Strengthen legislative and institutional responses in effectively addressing hate speech and incitement to national, racial or religious hatred, in accordance with the established international human rights standards and by integrating the guidance provided the Rabat Plan of Action;
- Ensure equal and effective participation of Ahmadis in public life and in decision-making processes that affect them, including by guaranteeing their political representation and their free exercise of their right to vote; by guaranteeing their access to employment and public services of any kind, and by protecting their right to form and maintain their associations and organizations;
- Address the multiple and intersecting forms of violence and discrimination suffered by Ahmadi women, children and refugees;
- Rescind any bans on Ahmadiyya publications, and ensure that Ahmadis fully enjoy their right to seek, receive and impart information and ideas, including through any media of their choice;
- Protect and safeguard Ahmadi cultural places and places of worship against attacks and desecrations;
- Eliminate discrimination and exclusion of Ahmadi children in education and vocational training; undertake appropriate legislative and policy measures to address physical and psychological violence and bullying inside and outside school premises; and, revise and amend national curricula and textbooks to eliminate prejudicial references that perpetrate stigma against minorities, and with the aim of strengthening human rights education and promoting inter-religious, inter-cultural understanding and dialogue.
- Ensure accountability and prosecute all those responsible for violations and attacks against Ahmadis and other minorities, and design and implement human rights awareness-raising and training programmes for all relevant state institutions and public officials, with the active participation of Ahmadiyya communities, as well as of religious leaders representing different faiths.
REMOVAL OF AHMADI OFFICIAL:
In the beginning of August 2021, It has been reported that a qualified Ahmadi Public Official was appointed as Chief Officer in Municipal Committee, Mianwali. When news broke out a malicious campaign spearheaded by Jamiat Ulema-e- Islam (JUI), Mianwali, demanding his appointment to be rescinded and hence creating a law and order situation(3). Due to the pressure this appointment was rescinded.
CONTINUOUS ATTACK ON AHMADIYYA MOSQUES:
We regret to report from April to August(4) 2021 several mosques were destroyed and demolition in Pakistan. At several occasions the police broke into the compound of the Ahmadiyya mosque and demolished the minaret of the Ahmadi Mosque.
At the start of December 2020(5), several websites of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community received a notice from the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) demanding to shut down websites containing Ahmadiyya websites. Google and Wikipedia(6) also received a notice from the PTA to remove sacrilegious content. These flagrant beaches of freedom of religion being forced on foreign territory shows how the Government of Pakistan is using the PTA to overarch and undermine international law to enforce its laws on foreign territory, companies and individuals of sovereign states.
The National Director of Public Affairs of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA Amjad Mahmood Khan Esq. testified to Congress(7) in this regard.
Ahmadis in Algeria also face ongoing persecution and despite various attempts to incorporate as a peaceful organisation in Algeria, the application for incorporation has been rejected by the government, due to pressure from extremist elements in Algeria.
Despite grave concerns raised by various NGO’s, Germany continuous to deport innocent Ahmadi Muslims from Germany to Pakistan. The 28 April 2021 EU Resolution which recognises Ahmadi as persecuted and also clearly outlines that the lives of Ahmadi Muslims is at risk, however Germany is continuing to deport Ahmadi Muslims. Many of these Ahmadi Muslims face the death penalty for practicing their faith in Pakistan.