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Pakistan: Females

Question for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

UIN 136584, tabled on 8 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to help end abductions, forced conversions and forced marriages of women and girls in Pakistan.

Answered on

15 March 2022

The UK condemns forced marriage and the forced conversion of women and girls. We regularly raise the issue of Freedom of Religion or Belief and women and girls' rights at a senior level with the Government of Pakistan. During his visit to Pakistan on 23 and 24 June 2021, Lord Ahmad met Prime Minister Khan, as well as other senior government ministers, and discussed the issue. He met interfaith leaders in order to better understand the situation of Pakistani minorities, particularly the issue of forced conversion and marriage. Most recently, he discussed the need to promote respect for all religions with Governor of Punjab Chaudhry Mohammad Sarwar on 28 November. The FCDO funds programmes in Pakistan that directly address early and forced marriages and gender-based violence. The UK government has supported the Government of Pakistan in setting up eight child courts to provide child-sensitive justice to children who come in contact with the law, including victims of child abuse, trafficking and child marriage.