London: European Parliament in its plenary session took Pakistan to task for the country’s abysmal human rights record with regard to treatment of the Christians and other minority communities.
The debate in the plenary session took place in the context of the recent attacks on the Christian community in Lahore on Easter day in 2016 that resulted in the killings of more than 70 individuals, including 30 children.
The Members of Eurpoean Parliament (MEP )criticised the dismal record of Pakistan in terms of minority protection and viewed the Lahore attacks in the backdrop of innumerable previous instances of attacks on minorities in the country.
Cristian Dan Preda remarked that the Lahore attacks showed lack of tolerance when it comes to granting minorities a minimal freedom of speech in Pakistan.
The MEPs also called for the removal of the controversial blasphemy laws in Pakistan and called for the release of Asia Bibi. Michaela Å ojdrova said that Asia Bibi faced persecution for professing her right to free faith.
The MEPs called upon the European Union to ensure the protection of human rights of the minorities and other vulnerable groups in Pakistan.
Christine Vergiat also stated that the Pakistan government supported terror groups, and called upon the EU to exert pressure on Pakistan by using the GSP agreements.
Alberto Cirio stated that EU must defend human rights in Pakistan, and as part of this must also show its concern towards the struggles of the people of Baluchistan and urged the International Government to pressure Pakistan to stop supporting terrorism.