Shocking and surprisingly Pakistan has officially ‘noted’ a suggestion that was given at the third Universal Periodic Review (UPR) asking the country to decriminalize law banning consensual sex and adultery in Pakistan.
Among hundreds of other suggestions, it has been recommended to decriminalize adultery, ensure that all perpetrators are punished which even include members and owners of jirgas.
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First, the suggestion was given by Canada and then the Czech Republic. Pakistan’s response to this suggestion was ‘Noted’. This means that Pakistan has not rejected the suggestion. It has to yet take the final decision to accept or deny it. As of yet, the recommendation has been noted.
An official who is associated with Ministry of Human Rights has also confirmed that Pakistan has officially ‘noted’ this suggestion.
As per the official, “Pakistan adopted the third cycle of UPR last month. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) will issue the official document in coming days.”
UPR was launched by United Nations General Assembly in 2006 and its aim is to go through a periodic review of UN member states human right records. Pakistan received 51 suggestions by UPR in 2008 out of which the country rejected 8 that asked the decriminalization of adultery, ending blasphemy law abuse and death penalty abolition. In 2012, in the second UPR, Pakistan received 167 suggestions out of which the country accepted 126, noted 34 and rejected 7.
Now Pakistan has noted the suggestion of legalizing non-marital consensual sex and as per a human right activist “Noting the recommendations on decriminalizing adultery and non-marital consensual sex by the Pakistan government during its recent Universal Periodic Review is shocking. The same recommendations were presented in 2008 UPR but were rejected by the government of Pakistan. We really need to check what forced influenced Pakistan.”
Adding, “Pakistani officials are showing a liberal face to the west to make them happy, but within the country, they are not even ready to pass and implement laws on issues like child marriage and domestic violence, which shows the double standard of two-faced government officials,” said the activist.
Similarly, Pakistan Ulema Council Chairman Tahir Ashrafi said, “It is impossible to decriminalize adultery in Pakistan as it is against Islam and the Constitution of Pakistan. If the government tries to do so, it would result in a disaster.”
He claimed, “Anyone who does this will face treason charges.”
Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) Chairman Dr. Qibla Ayaz said, “It is shocking for all of us to learn that the Pakistani government agreed to even consider this, even though it is impossible to decriminalize such acts in Pakistan.”