Friday, January 5, 2018

US places Pakistan on religious-flexibility watch list

The US has set Pakistan on a watch list for "extreme infringement" of religious flexibility, in the midst of a heightening war of words between the two nations.

In an announcement issued on Thursday, the state division added Pakistan to a unique watch list, while re-assigning a gathering of different nations as being of "specific worry" on the issue of religious flexibility.

"In extremely many places far and wide, individuals keep on being mistreated, treacherously arraigned, or detained for practicing their entitlement to flexibility of religion or conviction," Heather Nauert, state office representative, noted in an announcement.

"Today, various governments encroach upon people's capacity to receive, change, or revoke their religion or conviction."

Under the Universal Religious Opportunity Demonstration of 1998, the US every year assigns nations of specific concern, and Thursday's announcement re-assigned Burma, China, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

"The secretary [of state] additionally put Pakistan on an Exceptional Watch Rundown for serious infringement of religious flexibility," Nauert said.

In a 2017 report, the US Commission on Global Religious Flexibility noticed that the Pakistani government "kept on executing and endure methodical, continuous, and intolerable religious opportunity infringement".

Obscenity law

The report singled out arrangements, for example, the nation's lewdness law, under which many individuals have been condemned to death or life detainment, and refered to partisan viciousness against religious minorities, including Christians, Hindus, Ahmadis and Shia Muslims.

Recently, Pakistan hit back at the US after President Donald Trump blamed the nation for giving a place of refuge to "psychological militants"

Accordingly, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Pakistan's head administrator, assembled a conference of the National Security Advisory group, which issued an announcement reviling Trump's comments as "totally immeasurable as they repudiated actualities clearly, hit with awesome obtuseness at the trust between two countries worked over ages, and discredited the times of penances made by the Pakistani country".

Toward the end of last month, Pakistan's military cautioned the US against the likelihood of making one-sided move against outfitted gatherings on its dirt, after Rex Tillerson, US secretary of state, encouraged Pakistan to accomplish more to "overcome psychological oppressor associations".

Over the mid year, the US said it was withholding $255m in military help to Pakistan until the point that the nation expanded endeavors to get serious about inner "fear based oppressor" gatherings

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