Obama’s envoy meets Religious Affairs minister, demands minorities’ protection

Yusuf says constitution provides full protection to minorities

ISLAMABAD – Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Sardar Muhammad Yusuf has said that the Constitution of 1973 provides full protection to all minorities and the government is taking all possible steps to forge interfaith harmony in Pakistan.

“All minorities enjoy equal rights in Pakistan and they have due representation in the parliament. We are making all possible efforts to provide maximum facilities to minorities,” he said during his meeting with Arshad Hussain, a special envoy of US President Barack Obama for Organisation of the Islamic Conference.

Hussain, heading a four-member delegation called on the minister in his office and exchanged views on the problems facing the minorities in Pakistan. The minister said that measures were also being taken for the protection of places of worship of minorities. Yusuf said Pakistan was victim of terrorism as terrorists had targeted religious places and religious gatherings, besides worship places of minorities.

“Terrorists make no distinction between Muslims and non-Muslims during their attacks,” he said, adding that innocent people become target in terrorist attacks. He stated that the government celebrates 10 religious festivals of the minorities at official level while August 11 was observed as Minorities Day every year.

The delegation demanded for initiation of steps for the protection of minorities and the minister assured the delegation of his government cooperation on this count.

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