• EN - English
Proposition de résolution - B7-0410/2014Proposition de résolution
    Ce document n'est pas disponible dans votre langue. Il vous est proposé dans une autre langue parmi celles disponibles dans le menu de langue.

    MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on Pakistan: recent cases of persecution

    15.4.2014 - (2014/2694(RSP))

    with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
    pursuant to Rule 122 of the Rules of Procedure

    Jean Lambert, Nicole Kiil-Nielsen, Raül Romeva i Rueda on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group

    See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B7-0399/2014

    NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.
    Procédure : 2014/2694(RSP)
    Cycle de vie en séance
    Cycle relatif au document :  
    Textes déposés :
    Textes adoptés :


    European Parliament resolution on Pakistan: recent cases of persecution


    The European Parliament,

    - having regard to its resolution of 12 March 2014 on Pakistan’s regional role and political relations with the EU, of 10 October 2013 on recent cases of violence and persecution against Christians, notably in Maaloula (Syria) and Peshawar (Pakistan) and the case of Pastor Saeed Abedini (Iran), of 10 March 2011 on Pakistan, in particular the murder of Shahbaz Bhatti,

    - having regard to Art 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 and Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1966,

    - having regard to the UN Declaration on the Elimination of all Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination based on Religion and Belief of 1981,

    - having regard to the reports of the UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief and the Report of the Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers of 4 April 2013,

    - having regards to the statement of Amnesty International on the death sentence of a Christian man in Pakistan of 27 March 2014[1],

    - having regard to its resolution of 11 December 2013 on the Annual Report on Human Rights in the World and the European Union’s policy on the matter, condemning the persecution of religious minorities[2],

    - having regard to the EU-Pakistan five-year engagement plan of March 2012, containing priorities such as good governance, and dialogue on human rights, and the closely related 2nd EU-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue of 25th March 2014

    - having regard to the Council conclusions on Pakistan of 11 March 2013, reiterating the EU’s expectations regarding the promotion of and respect for human rights and condemning all violence including against religious minorities[3],

    - having regard to Rules 122(5) and 110(4) of its Rules of Procedure,

    A. whereas on 4 April 2014 a Christian couple Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagufta Kausar, was sentenced to death for allegedly sending a text message insulting the Prophet Mohammed; whereas the couple denied responsibility and declared that the phone in question was lost for a while before the message was sent;


    B. whereas on 28 March 2014 Sawan Masih, a Christian road sweeper from Lahore, was sentenced to death after a friend had accused him of making blasphemous remarks during an argument; whereas the announcement of allegations against Masih sparked two-days rioting of thousands of people destroying one of Lahore's oldest Christian neighbourhoods, and whereas the security forces stand accused of failing to take adequate measures to protect the community;


    C. whereas in January 2014, the British citizen Mohammad Asghar, who is suffering from paranoid schizophrenia, was sentenced to death on blasphemy charges because a man with whom he was embroiled in a property dispute accused him of having claimed to be the Prophet Mohamed;


    D. whereas another British citizen, 72-year-old Massud Ahmad, a member of the Ahmaddiya religious community, was only recently released on bail after having been being arrested in 2012 on charges of citing from the Koran, which is considered blasphemy in the case of Ahmaddis who are not recognised as Muslims and are forbidden to "behave as Muslims" under § 298-C of the criminal code;


    E. whereas Asia Bibi, a Christian who in 2010 became the first woman in Pakistan to be sentenced to death for blasphemy, is still lingering in prison awaiting the appeal on 14 April 2014;


    F. whereas in 2012, the 14-year -old Christian girl Rimsha Masih, who was wrongfully accused of desecrating the Quran, was acquitted after being found to have been framed, and the person responsible was arrested; however notes that she and her family had to leave the country;


    G. whereas according to reports, some 1300 people have been charged of blasphemy between the enactment of the laws in 1986 and 2010, with steep increases over recent years and whereas religious minorities, who represent only some 3% of the population, over-proportionally account for about half of the cases;


    H. whereas despite the death sentences, no one has been executed in Pakistan since a moratorium on the death penalty was introduced in 2008, however dozens who have been accused of blasphemy have reportedly been murdered, and even those charged and later acquitted, are usually obliged to go into hiding or leave Pakistan;

    I. whereas for years Pakistan's blasphemy laws have raised global concern because accusations are often motivated by score settling, economic gain or religious intolerance, and foster a culture of vigilantism giving mobs a platform for harassment and attacks;

    J. whereas particularly members of the Shia community fall victim on a daily basis to the surge in sectarian violence in Pakistan, whereas according to Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) almost 30,000 members of the Hazara community have migrated from Baluchistan in the last five years as nearly 1,000 members of the Hazara community have been killed in targeted attacks since 2009; whereas reportedly more than 10,000 Hindus have also fled the province as abductions-for-ransom have become routine over the last three years;


    K. whereas hundreds of honour killings have been reported in 2013 alone which represent only the most visible aggression against women considering the continuously high rate of domestic violence and forced marriage

    1. Expresses its deep concern over the steep increase of sectarian violence and religious intolerance towards minorities and the continuing repression against women in Pakistan;

    2. is worried about the effects that such violence has on the future development of Pakistani society as a whole and in view of the socio-economic challenges the country faces; underlines that it is in Pakistan's long-term interest for all its citizens to experience greater security


    3.  Strongly condemns all acts of violence as well as all kinds of discrimination and intolerance on the basis of belief, ethnic belonging or gender and underlines that the institutionalised discrimination through blasphemy, hudood and anti-Ahmaddi laws contribute to a sense of hatred and vigilantism;


    4. Calls on the Government of Pakistan to follow up on the recommendations of the UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, notably to repeal the blasphemy laws, Hudood Ordinances and anti-Ahmadi laws and to replace them with provisions in conformity with Pakistan's Constitution and the international instruments of human rights law to which Pakistan is a party;


    5. Also urges a reform of the provisions in the criminal law which allow the murderers in the case of honour killings to escape punishment by paying compensation;


    6.  Calls on the Pakistani authorities to release all those who are solely imprisoned on the basis of exercising their freedom of expression, to protect the judges, prosecutors and lawyers, and witnesses, who are involved in such cases in order to guarantee their independence and to continue efforts to prosecute those who are being found to have falsely accused a person of blasphemy;


    7.  Urgently appeals to the Government and Parliament to introduce reforms to the formal justice system in order to discourage recourse to informal structures such as jirgas and panchayats, and to substantially increase the financial and human resources of the judiciary, in particular at the level of first instance courts,

    8.  Calls on the Government of Pakistan to turn the de facto moratorium on the death penalty into an abolition of the death penalty in law and practice;

    9. Appeals to the government to speed up the madrassa reforms by establishing a basic curriculum of international standard, with special emphasis on removing hate material from the curricula and introducing community and religious tolerance teaching into the basic syllabus;


    10. Calls on the Government of Pakistan to intervene to protect victims of religiously motivated mob violence, notably to ban public hate speech, and encourages all Pakistanis to work together to promote and ensure tolerance and mutual understanding;


    11. Welcomes the Supreme Court's order to receive a detailed report on the number of worship places of minorities and their security arrangements in Pakistan as a first step;


    12. Expresses its concern over the recent tendency in Pakistan to curb the freedom of expression and information by blocking Youtube and making attempts to control much frequented internet services such as Google; is equally worried about the recent draft Protection of Pakistan Bill against terrorism that would violate fundamental rights to freedom of speech, privacy and peaceful assembly, as well as the proposed law to 'regulate foreign-funded non-governmental organizations (NGOs)' which would massively curtail their independence and freedom of operation and could lead to the break-down of the work of internationally connected NGOs in Pakistan;


    13. Calls on the government to stop censorship of the internet and to revise the draft anti-terrorism and draft NGO legislation;


    14. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the Vice-President of the European Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the EU Special Representative for Human Rights, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the Secretary-General of the UN, the UN Human Rights Council, and the Government and Parliament of Pakistan.