US urges Pakistan to swiftly probe HR activist killing

US urges Pakistan to swiftly probe HR activist killing

amrica flagThe United States has urged Pakistani government to swiftly investigate the murder of human rights activist and lawyer Rashid Rehman and bring to justice those responsible.

Rehman, president of the Multan chapter of HRCP, was shot dead in Multan on Thursday by unknown gunmen.

“We were deeply saddened by reports of the murder of Rashid Rehman, an attorney and human rights defender in Pakistan,” US State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said in a daily briefing.

She said slain attorney was representing a university professor accused of blasphemy and he had received death threats for his work.

“We encourage Pakistani authorities, as we have in similar cases in Pakistan and around the world, to swiftly investigate this crime and bring to justice those responsible,” she added.

Responding to question about increase in religious intolerance in Pakistan, Psaki said: “We evaluate concerns along those lines on an annual basis through our annual report. I think that’s going to be released in – soon, in the coming weeks.”

Referring to a recent of the US Deputy State Secretary to Islamabad, Psaki said that the United States has been with the government of Pakistan and the Secretary Burns during his visit met with the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and discussed a range of issues.

When asked about alleged cross-border terrorism from Pakistan and safe havens in tribal areas, Psaki said Deputy Secretary Burns in his statement pointed out that this was an issue that was discussed.

“As he noted in his statement, countering cross-border militancy and shutting down safe havens is critical not only for Pakistan’s long-term peace and prosperity, but also for positive relations between Pakistan and all of its neighbors, including Afghanistan,” she added.

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