Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 14th December 2004.

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Photo of Mr Andy King Mr Andy King Labour, Rugby and Kenilworth

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to the Government of Pakistan concerning the deaths in police custody of (a) Nasir Masih and (b) Samuel Masih.

Photo of Douglas Alexander Douglas Alexander Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Trade) (also Department of Trade and Industry), Minister of State (Department of Trade and Industry) (Trade) (also Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

The British Government takes a serious view of all violent incidents involving persecution and of all other forms of religious intolerance and discrimination in Pakistan.

We believe that collective action through the European Union (EU) is the most effective way of tackling these issues. The last EU demarche to the Pakistani Government which expressed our concerns on Human Rights was in May this year. The case of Samuel Masih specifically was raised in this demarche.

More recently our High Commission in Islamabad has contacted the Public Safety Commission where the incident involving Nasir Masih took place. An inquiry is taking place into this case and local officials have undertaken to keep our High Commission informed of developments and to ensure that, subject to inquiry findings, appropriate action is taken against the police involved.

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