Will not compromise on blasphemy issue: PM Imran Khan

Prime Minister Imran Khan has once again reiterated the principle stance of not compromising on the issue of blasphemy against our beloved Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

Expressing his views during a cabinet meeting on Monday (today), PM Imran Khan accentuated that Pakistan will not compromise on anti-blasphemy laws in support of finality of Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) Prophethood.

The remarks come as earlier the EU Parliament had passed a resolution aimed at reviewing Pakistan’s GSP Plus status. The resolution had raised questions on Pakistan’s blasphemy laws citing Shagufta Kausar and Shafqat Emmanuel case who were awarded death penalty on blasphemy charges back in 2014.

The resolution secured 622 votes in its favor whereas 3 votes were casted against it with European Commission and the European External Action Service (EEAS) calling for review of EU’s trade relations with Pakistan and latter’s GSP+ status.

In response, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) had rebuked EU parliament’s resolution arguing that it lacked critical understanding regarding Pakistan’s blasphemy laws and Islamic provisions on the issue.

The FO’s statement also reiterated that Pakistan remains committed towards ensuring religious freedom and protection of human rights especially minorities.

Minorities in Pakistan enjoy complete religious freedom as per the constitution, it added.

What Is EU’s GSP+ Status?

EU’s Generalized Scheme of Preferences (GSP) removes import duties from products coming into the EU market from vulnerable developing countries. This helps developing countries to alleviate poverty and create jobs based on international values and principles, including labour and human rights.

GSP+ is a special incentive arrangement for sustainable development and good governance. It slashes these same tariffs to 0% for vulnerable low and lower-middle income countries that implement 27 international conventions related to human rights, labour rights, protection of the environment and good governance.