Date: August 27, 2016
Sardar Mushtaq Gill tells ANS that has gone into hiding in Sri Lanka and is seeking asylum
By Dan Wooding, Founder of ASSIST News Service
SRI LANKA (ANS – August 27, 2016) -- Sardar Mushtaq Gill, a prominent Pakistani Christian lawyer, says that has fled the county with his wife and four children, following numerous death threats.
In a message sent to the ASSIST News Service (www.assistnews.net), Gill said, “Death threats and attacks by the extremists, have made it extremely difficult for me to carry out human rights work and continually go into hiding for myself and for my family’s survival in Pakistan.
“I along with my four children and wife, fled from Pakistan on August 8, 2016, and sought asylum with UNHCR [United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees] in Sri Lanka.
Mr. Gill, who has been given the title of “Human Rights Defender” by a prominent human rights organization, is a law graduate in his mid-thirties from Lahore Punjab University, Pakistan, and has been running LEAD [Legal Evangelical Association Development] -- http://leadfamily.blogspot.ca/
The group was set up for “the protection and promotion of the right to freedom of religion and belief” in Pakistan, and says on its website, “The main problem in Pakistan is religious intolerance and discrimination which affects religious minorities and creates in them the feelings of insecurity of life and property.”
Mr. Gill has been particularly critical of the misuse of Pakistan’s infamous blasphemy laws, and has spoken out in defense of Asia Bibi, the Christian mother-of-five, who is at present appealing her death sentence.
Because of his high profile, and also his free legal work on behalf of the victims of mob violence, forced conversion to Islam, forced marriages and rape victims, he has faced numerous death threats, with shots being fired at his home and attacks at his family members.
Because of this, Mr. Gill and his family, have since 2013, been in hiding in Pakistan, meaning and they were not able to reside at a permanent place, but were constantly on the move. He says that he had asked the authorities to provide safety for him and his family, but he claims those requests have been ignored.
Now, he and his family have, themselves, become victims of the intolerance against Christians in Pakistan, something he has doggedly fought against over the past few years.
If you would like to help support Mr. Gill and his family at this critical time, please go to http://leadfamily.blogspot.ca/
Photo captions: 1) Sardar Mushtaq Gill. 2) Asia Bibi. 3) Dan Wooding recording his radio show.
About the writer: Dan Wooding, 75, is an award-winning winning author, broadcaster and journalist who was born in Nigeria of British missionary parents, Alfred and Anne Wooding, who then worked with the Sudan Interior Mission, now known as SIM. He now lives in Southern California with his wife Norma, to whom he has been married for some 53 years. They have two sons, Andrew and Peter, and six grandchildren who all live in the UK. Dan is the founder and international director of the ASSIST (Aid to Special Saints in Strategic Times) and the ASSIST News Service (ANS), and is also the author of some 45 books. He also has one weekly radio show and two TV shows all based in Southern California.