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USA: Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission to focus on plight of religious minorities in South Asia

South Asia is home to 30 million Christians and over 500 million Muslims — about one-third of the world’s entire Muslim population.   

Amjad Khan, Esq. of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community will submit
testimony at the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission
(Photo: D. Robinson / VOA)

Ahmadiyya Times | News Watch | US Desk
Source/Credit: The Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission
By Staff Reporter | March 18, 2012

A US Congressional panel is slated to hold a hearing on the continuing plight of religious minorities in South Asia, focusing particularly on Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.

According to a press release issues by the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission (TLHRC), the hearing, scheduled for Wednesday, March 21, 2012 at 10 am, will focus on challenges facing religious minorities in South Asia.

South Asia is home to 30 million Christians and over 500 million Muslims — about one-third of the world’s entire Muslim population.

TLHRC press release asserts that four major world religions; Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, and Jainism, find their followers concentrated in large parts of the region.

Many countries in the region have democratic systems of government with constitutions that, on paper at least, provide varying degrees of protections for religious minorities.

However, the press release says, “many of these systems are fragile and, in practice, religious freedoms are often constrained, in some cases by the states themselves.”

“As a result, sectarian and religiously-motivated violence is chronic and the governments have been unable or, in some cases, unwilling to protect religious minorities,” the press statement added.

Several witnesses are scheduled to appear before the commission.

According to the release, Leonard Leo, Chair, U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom; Majed El Shafie, founder of One Free World International; Amjad M. Khan, National Director of Public Affairs, Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA will offer testimony before the Commission

Also scheduled to appear are Dr. Sachi G. Dastider, Distinguished Service Professor, Department of Politics Economics and Law, State University of New York at Old Westbury; and Dr. Angana Chatterji, India Human Rights Specialist.

The Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission can be reached at 202-225-3599 or tlhrc@mail.house.gov.

This content-post is archived for backup and record keeping purposes. The views expressed by the author and source of this news archive do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of Ahmadiyya Times.

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