On the 23rd of March, 2021, Pakistani prime minister Mr. Imran Khan arrives on an official visit to Sri Lanka.
Our affiliate, the Council of Ex-Muslims of Sri Lanka issued the following statement:
Sri Lankan Ex-Muslims formed the Council of Ex-Muslims of Sri Lanka (CEMSL) in 2016 as a support organization for those who leave Islam to become irreligious in Sri Lanka. We advocate for free speech, human rights, secular humanism, and freethought. CEMSL is a part of the broader international network of Ex-Muslim, humanist and atheist organizations.
On the 23rd of March, 2021, Pakistani prime minister Mr. Imran Khan arrives on an official visit to Sri Lanka. CEMSL wants to Point out the following to Mr. Khan:
- The Pakistani government should ensure that Pakistani citizens who leave Islam are protected and can live their lives freely in Pakistan. Ex-Muslims are living in fear and forced to live in the closet in Pakistan. They fear the safety of their life. The government should pay attention to this issue and make necessary amendments to the law.
- Pakistan has failed to protect its minorities:
- During the last decade, Sri Lanka has received an increasing number of Pakistani refugees belonging to Christian, Ahmadiya, Hindu, Atheist, and other religious minorities victimized through Pakistani blasphemy law. Pakistan should abolish these laws and free all arrested for blasphemy.
- Pakistan should stop kidnap and forceful conversions of minor women of Hindu, Christian, and other religious minorities to Islam.
- Pakistani authorities must enforce legal retribution for the culprits who vandalize Hindu Temples, Ahmadiya Mosques, and places of worship of religious minorities.
- Mentioning the religious identity of citizens should be removed from Identity documents and other government records.
- We request the Pakistani government to protect archeological sites and monuments in Pakistan. Recently a statue of Buddha was destroyed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. This statue was part of the combined heritage of South Asia. Furthermore, the government should protect all such relics from vandalism in the future.
- To counter extremism and terrorism, Pakistan should remove Islamic studies from the school curriculum to promote knwoledge based secular education.
- Pakistan should separate religion from state and let go of seventh-century Islamic dogma to become a secular state aligned with the modern era.
- We are shocked to know that Moulana Shalahuddin Ayubi, a member of your Parliament (National Assembly) has married a 14 years old child a few days ago. It is a shameful thing to have happened in this modern era. It is unacceptable that
the lives of children are being distorted today based on a mistake that is said to have occurred 1400 years ago. Pakistan Should enforce legal age of marriage at 18 years to stop child marriages and to protect minors. Every child should be provided quality education.
We hope that when a Pakistani prime minister visits Sri Lanka in the future, Pakistan would have solved these critical issues and would be one of the beautiful secular countries.