Thursday, March 10, 2022
An International Religious Freedom (IRF) Roundtable was held in Peshawar to address the alarming increase in the religiously motivated violence. Members of religious minorities and marginalized communities convened to discuss the threats and develop a set of recommendations to end this violence.
The Roundtable was moderated by Anila Ali, Chair of the IRF Roundtable in Pakistan. The event was facilitated by Wagma Feroz, a women’s rights activist, and hosted by the American Muslim & Multifaith Women’s Empowerment Council (AMMWEC).
After the Roundtable, Anila Ali, visited the home of Priest William Siraj and met with his widow. Sharing the grief of the family, Ali vowed to elevate the voices of Christian community and of the vulnerable Christian women who are often pressured to convert to Islam. Oftentimes, under-age marriages are held as a way to protect Hindu and Christian girls from forced conversions. Moreover, blasphemy laws are often used as a tool of religious persecution despite global outrage.
The first-ever women-led Roundtable held in Karachi in November of 2021 continues to strengthen communities and empower women to create their own narratives and advocate for themselves. Developing female leadership and creating the next generation of women peacemakers who will impact positive change.
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