Implementation of the rights of refugees under the international law
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His Excellency Mr Filippo Grandi
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees(UNHCR)
Rue de Montbrillant 94
1201, Geneva, Switzerland,
Subject: Implementation of the rights of refugees under the international law
Your Excellency, Mr Filippo Grandi,
We, the Overseas Pakistani Christian Alliance, respectfully bring forward the following circumstances to your kind consideration.
Recently, on 1 April 2018, four Christians have been killed in Quetta outside the Church; ISIS group claimed responsibility for that attack. On 17 December 2017, a shameful act of terrorism took place in the same city, Quetta, which resulted in nine kills and at least 35 injured in the terrifying attack. Christian were busy in preparation of their Christmas festival when two suicide bombers attacked them in this horrible incident.
On 18 February 2018, a young Pakistani Christian boy Patras Masih has been accused of false blasphemy under the section of 295 C of Pakistani Penal Code in Lahore. Meanwhile, the local police arrested Mr. Sajid Masih, the cousin of Patras, and during the interrogation, the FIA police forced him to perform oral sex with his cousin brother.
Christians are never treated as equal citizens in Pakistan and are suffering because of their faith. They are falsely charged under the blasphemy laws which has a mandatory death penalty. Christian churches and villages are routinely set on fire and innocent people are killed under spurious blasphemy charges. Christian girls and women are kidnapped, raped and even forcibly converted to Islam and the government and Pakistani courts have failed to provide justice for them.
As presented above, extremism and hate against Christians have reached an unprecedented level against Christians but the government has failed to take this matter seriously. Because of increasing discrimination and persecution in Pakistan against Christians, they are being forced to escape from Pakistan to save their lives.
Many Christians escape to Thailand and Malaysia and apply for asylum to the United Nations High Commission for Refugees Office in these countries, but they are being treated unfairly. Sometimes their cases are denied, while those whose claims are accepted have to wait for years for it. During this period of uncertainty, they suffer financially but also they are put in a legal limbo, adding to their misery and increasing their desperation.
Thailand has not signed United Nations Refugee Convention of 1951 regarding the status of asylum seekers and refugees, therefore the country is not obliged to provide protection asylum seekers including Pakistani Christians and consequently they are considered as illegal immigrants in Thailand. This is regardless of existing fundamental right under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to seek asylum in other countries to escape from persecution in their own countries.
In Thailand, Pakistani Christian Asylum Seekers are suffering. They are living very miserably but still they are hopeful that they will get justice from United Nations.At this moment around (2000) Two thousand Pakistani Christian Asylum Seekers are living in Thailand. And around (400) Four hundred people received refugee status from UNHCR but still waiting for resettlement from last three-four years. The condition of International detention center is more than worse and around (86) Eighty-six ( 44 males,36 females and 6 minors ) are detained for many years.And rest of the people are living in hiding places on this hope that one day they will get justice from UNHCR and one day they will also treated like humans.
According to the article 2 of International human rights law۔ Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration، without distinction of any kind, such as race,color، sex, language, religion, nation or social origin,
property birth or another status.
Furthermore,no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs whether it be independent trust nonself or under any other limitation of sovereignty.
We therefore respectfully call upon the UNHCR to please consider the situation of growing persecution of Pakistani Christians because of their faith and avoid unnecessary delay to save them from undesired sufferings in countries where they seek protection.
Overseas Pakistani Christian Alliance
Watson Gill , Gulbaz Fazal , Pastor Nadeem Din, Ijaz Mathew Zulfquar , Bobby Bob ,Jamshed Malik , Younas William . Pastor Imran Gill. Gasper Daniel.
Bishop Arshed Khokhar , Pevez Bhatti, Shahid Perviaz ,Latif Bhatti
Asher Sarfaraz, Tariq Javed Randhawa,
Nasir Saeed, Taskeen Khan, Stephen Peters (former MPA),
Noel Malik , Sarwar Bhatti , Jeem Phey Gauri,
Ruth Rukhsana , Samuel Piyara , Kashif Nawab
Farooq Ansar, Anjlo Ajmal,
Asher Nazar Munawar
Asif Shahbaz Khokhar
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