Islamabad - A conference was organised by the ministry of law, justice and human rights in collaboration with Asia Foundation at a local hotel here on Wednesday to observe Human Rights Day.

A large number of participants including ambassadors, representatives of UN agencies and INGOs/NGOs, and government officers attended the event.

Speaking on the occasion, Barrister Zafar Ullah Khan, special assistant to the prime minister on parliamentary affairs, said, “Intolerance is not the problems of a particular religion or region; rather it is a human problem, which can be addressed through behavioural change.” Pakistan is an Islamic republic and a democratic state and both religion and constitution of the state grant equal rights to all of its citizens irrespective of caste, creed, colour and religions, said Khan. He said that the founding father of Pakistan had clearly said that all of Pakistani citizens would be equal before the law. No one should blame any religion in context of human rights violations. It is ironic that people blame on Islam when incidents of human rights violation take place in any particular Muslim country, said Khan.

It is Islam which guaranteed 14 centuries ago the rights of women, children, minorities and non-Muslims on equal footings, he said. He said in Pakistan the incidents of human rights violation were increasing day by day due to internal and external factors. “Now time has come to aware and educate the people on human rights , especially the rights of vulnerable and weaker segments of the society including women, minorities and children, he emphasised. He said that the government was committed to human rights in the country in line with the national and international resolutions.

The UN General Assembly proclaimed 10 December as Human Rights Day in 1950 to bring to the attention of the peoples of the world the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as the common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations.