Pakistan: Thousands of girls kidnapped, raped, and forced to convert to Islam

The brutal persecution of young Christian girls in Pakistan is largely ignored by human rights activists

Friday 16 August - The Pontifical charity, Aid to the Church in Need, is sounding the alarm on the plight of young Christian women, and even teenagers, in Pakistan who are forced to convert to Islam.

'Every year at least a thousand girls are kidnapped, raped, and forced to convert to Islam, even forced to marry their tormentors,' according to Tabassum Yousaf, a Catholic lawyer linked to the St. Egidio Community.

To draw attention to the issue, the papal foundation ACN is hosting a press conference in Karachi next Thursday, which will see the attendance of Cardinal Joseph Coutts and several Muslim leaders.

The phenomenon of forced conversions hits Pakistan’s religious minorities, especially Christians and Hindus.

In just one case, last month, a 14-year-old Christian girl was abducted in Lahore and forced to marry her kidnapper. Police later informed her parents that a conversion certificate had been registered for her.

Though current Pakistani law sets the legal marriage age at 16 for girls, ACN is pushing for it to be changed to 18.

The Catholic charity is also advocating for better legal protections against kidnappings and forced conversions for religious minorities. Families of victims often face an uphill battle in court when taking on perpetrators of forced conversions.

The press conference on Thursday falls close to the national Minorities Day, which was held on August 11.

Ms. Yousaf, the Catholic lawyer, says the West and the international media 'can do much to safeguard religious minorities in Pakistan.'

Editor's comment - The national and international media will do precisely nothing for fear of appearing 'Islamophobic' or 'racist'. It's going to be up to organisations like Britain First to keep on highlighting issues such as these and making the world realise that not only is Islam the problem, but that we, the non-Muslims of the world, are not going to put up with it for much longer.

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