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From Our Member NCJP, Pakistan – Press Statement: Condolence on the Death of Leading Human Rights Lawyer and Activist Ms. Asma Jahangir

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On February 11, 2018, a renowned senior lawyer and human rights activist, co-founder of Human Rights Commission of Pakistan and founder of AGHS legal cell Ms. Asma Jahangir passed away in Lahore. During her lifetime Ms. Asma Jahangir received several awards, including a Hilal-i-Imtiaz in 2010 and a Sitara-i-Imtiaz. She was also awarded internationally for advocating human rights of all people through Unesco/Bilbao Prize for the Promotion of a Culture of Human Rights and an Officier de la Légion d’honneur by France. She also received the 2014 Right Livelihood Award and the 2010 Freedom Award from the International Rescue Committee. Ms. Asma Jehangir was Pakistan’s first woman to serve as the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan from 2010 to 2012.

Her contribution in the United Nation as Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief and trustee of International Crisis Group were noteworthy. She was currently UN Special Rapporteur on Iran, ensuring rights of Christian minority and fair trails for the accused. She worked tirelessly to ensure human rights for all citizens of Pakistan, in particular the rights of women. She always stood courageously for equality and rights of the oppressed and marginalised communities.

The National Commission for Justice and Peace, a rights based organization of Pakistan Catholic Bishops’ Conference, expresses heartfelt condolences to the family of the deceased Hero of Pakistan in the field of Human Rights. Chairperson His Grace Archbishop Dr. Joseph Arshad, National Director Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Yousaf Mani and Executive Director Mr. Cecil Shane Chaudhry said in a joint statement that, “Ms. Asma Jahangir was a national asset, a legend whose contribution towards upholding rule of law, democracy and rights of entire human race have inspired us and many a generation. She was indeed a voice for the voiceless and with her passing our nation is in shock and grief.  The vacuum created by her will never be filled”.

They further prayed for her soul to rest in eternal peace with God Almighty. The Commission also asked the nation to be motivated and inspired by her life and struggle and pay tribute by continuing to be considerate towards others and carry on the light of humanity lit by her, by speaking up for the oppressed and marginalised communities in Pakistan.

NCJP Media Cell