Pakistan: Blasphemy

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 28th March 2011.

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Photo of Gemma Doyle Gemma Doyle Shadow Minister (Defence)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether he has had recent discussions with the government of Pakistan on the blasphemy laws in that country.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

I raised the blasphemy laws with Pakistan's former Minister for Minorities Mr. Shahbaz Bhatti in January this year. My noble Friend the Lady Warsi also raised these issues with the Speaker of the Pakistan Parliament on 17 January 2011. Following Mr Bhatti's murder, the Prime Minister wrote to express his condolences to President Zardari. I made a statement condemning his killing, alongside the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and the Lady Warsi. We will continue to engage with the authorities in Pakistan on this issue.

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