Global News - Redeem the Oppressed

European Human Rights Court Nods To A Pakistani Christian’s Asylum Claim

Sigh of Relief for a Pakistani Christian convert, as a European Human Rights Court shows a green light to his asylum claim. In keeping the security concerns, the real name of the asylum claimant has been withheld, as there remains a potentially high risk for this Christian convert.

European Court of Human Rights

In a ruling, on April 26, the European Court of Human Rights denounced the Swiss authorities for turning down asylum application of this Pakistani Christian convert. The court expressed deep concerns that the expulsion of this convert will land him in dire situation. In which case, his life is at serious risk by his family and community back home.

Recognizing the consequential violation of the European Convention on Human Rights guarantee to the right of life and inhumane treatment to the asylum seekers, the court censured the rejection of his asylum claim. Furthermore, the court said that the Swiss authorities should have considered the applicant’s case in the light of his conversion and the consequent hostility he can potentially face in his own country. The court therefore, ordered the Swiss authorities to pay the affected person a lump sum of 6,885 euros in compensation of the costs and expenses incurred in due course.

Details emerged that the asylum seeker who hails from Pakistan had converted to Christianity back in 2015. After arriving in the Switzerland, the claimant then converted to Christianity and was residing in the country and sought asylum on the basis of his proselytization.

Pakistan is home to densely Islamic population, while the religious minorities not is significant numbers. In a yearly report, Open Doors has listed Pakistan at eighth number in terms of Islamic persecution of the religious minorities. For the most part, majority of Pakistani Christian population is marginalized and struggling to make both ends meet.

By Farrukh Saif

Farrukh Saif is a Pakistani human rights activist based in Germany. He founded his own organization, the Farrukh Saif Foundation (FSF), in 2009 with the goal of supporting marginalized and oppressed minorities in Pakistan who are affected by religious discrimination, blasphemy laws, forced conversions, abductions, rape, and bonded slavery. The main focus of the FSF is on the liberation of bonded laborers, particularly those working in brick kilns in rural areas of Pakistan. In 2018, the FSF merged with the US-based Emergency Committee to Save the Persecuted and Enslaved. Throughout his career, Farrukh has been a leading voice for the rights of minorities in Pakistan and has gained international attention for his campaigns against the misuse of blasphemy laws and the belief that asylum is not a crime. In 2014, he played a key role in the release of hundreds of asylum seekers from Thai jails and has worked with his legal team to save numerous victims of strict blasphemy laws in Pakistan. Farrukh has also been invited by the Hungarian government to discuss his work and the issues he addresses. In addition to his work with the FSF, Farrukh has also been involved in various other humanitarian efforts, including providing health care services to internally displaced persons in Khayber Pakhtoon Khawa in 2009 and assisting flood victims in Sindh and Punjab in 2010. He has worked to aid victimized minorities in Pakistan and has a strong track record of successfully advocating for their rights. Farrukh joined forces with Keith Davies in 2018 to co-found the Emergency Committee to Save The Persecuted and Enslaved, and since 2009, they have collectively successfully rescued more than 36000 individuals from slavery and persecution.