US adds Pakistan to ‘special watch list’ for religious freedom violations

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US adds Pakistan to ‘special watch list’ for religious freedom violations

Post by Didge on Sat Jan 06, 2018 8:57 am

The State Department on Thursday announced Pakistan had been added to a “special watch list” due to its treatment of religious minorities within the country’s borders.

Pakistan was added to the list under the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 last month, with the announcement citing the country’s “severe violations of religious freedom.”

The department also announced that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson moved to redesignate Myanmar, China, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan as countries of “particular concern.”

The law was passed during the Clinton administration as part of an effort to make religious freedom a key objective of U.S. foreign policy.

Pakistan, which is an Islamic republic, has been under scrutiny for its treatment of religious minorities in the country.

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Human beings are born with different capacities. If they are free, they are not equal. And if they are equal, they are not free.

-- Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.

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