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06/07/2021 Pakistan (International Christian Concern) – The Governor of Punjab, Chaudry Mohammad Sarwar, declared that Pakistan is the safest country for religious minorities. The statement came just days before the Hight Court of Pakistan acquitted a couple (Shafqat and Shagufta) for being accused of blasphemy, after having served seven years on death row.

They are not a unique case—religious minorities live under constant fear of being accused of blasphemy. The blasphemy law is consistently held over the religious minorities of Pakistan as a tool of oppression and persecution.

Governments and advocacy groups around the world consistently call attention to Pakistan’s blasphemy law as one of the harshest, with punishments including life in prison and the death penalty. Religious minorities are accused of blasphemy disproportionately compared to those of the religious majority community.

The governor’s statement comes at a time when much of the world’s attention is directed at Pakistan’s blasphemy law. Radicals in the country have appealed to the concept of blasphemy in calling for the French ambassador to be kicked out of the country after President Macron defended a cartoonist who ridiculed Islam.

Pakistan’s leadership is desperately trying to defend its religious freedom record on the international stage, but is falling short of as more evidence comes to surface on the realities of life for religious minorities in Pakistan.

For interviews, contact Addison Parker: press@persecution.org