A group of Pakistani Christians in a distressed situation, symbolizing the persecution they face.
Global News - Redeem the Oppressed

The Silent Crisis: Persecution of Christians in Pakistan

A Call to Action from Redeem the Oppressed

By Farrukh Saif, International Ground Team Director

In recent months, the plight of Christians in Pakistan has reached alarming levels. From Faisalabad to Rawalpindi, the Christian community finds itself under siege, facing mob violence, blasphemy charges, and systemic discrimination. As a human rights organization committed to assisting persecuted minorities, we at Redeem the Oppressed cannot remain silent.

The Faisalabad Crisis

In the Faisalabad district, the situation has been particularly dire. A young Christian girl questioned interim Punjab Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi, asking, “Can you guarantee this won’t happen again? Can you ensure our safety?” Her questions came after hundreds of Christians fled violence in Jaranwala, their homes gutted and lives shattered. Most of these individuals are sanitary workers living on meager wages, sharing cramped homes with up to 18 people.

Rawalpindi: A Powder Keg

Rawalpindi, adjacent to Pakistan’s capital, Islamabad, has also been a hotspot for anti-Christian sentiment. Fears of mob attacks led to a mass exodus of Christians from the city. Despite promises of “foolproof security” from local authorities, the absence of visible security personnel speaks volumes.

The Blasphemy Trap

Mariam Lal and Newosh Arooj, nurses at Civil Hospital in Faisalabad, found themselves accused of blasphemy—a charge that carries life imprisonment. They have lived in limbo for two years, their lives on hold as the case drags on. The blasphemy laws in Pakistan disproportionately target Christians. Between 1947 and 2021, there were 89 documented instances of fatal attacks linked to blasphemy allegations.

Political and Economic Instability

Pakistan’s political turmoil and economic crisis have created a fertile ground for extremist groups to exploit religious minorities. The more moderate factions within the political elite find it increasingly challenging to counter a mindset that has been “Talibanized,” as one former Pakistan archbishop put it.

The Struggle for Dignity

Christians in Pakistan are often relegated to low-paying jobs, trapped in feudal-style working conditions. The government’s Urdu-language newspapers even advertise jobs for street cleaners specifically targeting Christians. This systemic discrimination extends to education, where Christian students like Sania Samuel face uphill battles to break the cycle of poverty and stigmatization.

A Ray of Hope

Despite these overwhelming challenges, the Christian community in Pakistan remains resilient. Their faith serves as a beacon of hope in times of uncertainty. Organizations like Redeem the Oppressed & ECSPE are providing support on the ground, but more needs to be done.

Call to Action

We urge you to stand with us in solidarity with the persecuted Christians in Pakistan. Your donation can make a difference. Funds raised will go directly to our ground team in Pakistan, led by Farrukh Saif, to provide immediate relief, legal aid, and long-term support for these marginalized communities.

Donate Now to Support Our Pakistani Ground Team

Together, we can bring about change and offer a glimmer of hope to those living under the shadow of persecution. Repealing or reforming the blasphemy laws is an essential step toward ensuring the safety and rights of all individuals in Pakistan. Let us not be bystanders in the face of injustice.

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.
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