In a morning TV show on Pakistan’s most watched TV channel televangelist Aamir Liaquat Hussain along with panel of Muslim clerics declared Ahmadiyya Muslims “enemies of Pakistan” and “enemies of Islam”.
Responding to the broadcast the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community issued the following statement:
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community condemns a recent edition of the programme, ‘Subh e Pakistan’, broadcast in Pakistan on GEO Television on 22 December 2014, hosted by Amir Liaquat Hussein, in which so-called religious scholars made completely false allegations about the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
In what can only be described as ‘hate-speech’, the language used was both inflammatory and defamatory and clearly designed to incite religious hatred against Ahmadi Muslims living in Pakistan and further afield.
In the current programme that aired on 22 December, Ahmadi Muslims are described as “enemies of Islam” and “enemies of Pakistan”. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is described as a “common enemy” for all Pakistanis. Pakistanis are urged to put aside all their religious differences and unite together in opposition against the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
It is also claimed that Ahmadi Muslims are involved in various ‘plots’ against Pakistan and that they are to blame for the terrorism that is currently prevalent in the country. An attempt is even made to link the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community to the Peshawar school attack of 16 December – even though a well-known terrorist organisation has openly and proudly claimed to have conducted that heinous attack on innocent schoolchildren.
In 2008, a similar programme broadcast by GEO TV and also hosted by Amir Liaquat Hussein described Ahmadi Muslims as ‘Wajibul Qatl’ — meaning that it was a ‘duty’ of Muslims to murder them. Following the broadcast of that programme 2 well-known Ahmadi Muslim leaders were brutally martyred within two days.
In 1974, the Pakistan Constitution was amended to declare the Ahmadiyya Community as non-Muslim. Since then Ahmadi Muslims in Pakistan have faced continued persecution and discrimination.
In 1984, the self-representation and practice of Islam by the members of the Ahmadiyya Community was made criminal, and in some cases, subject to the death penalty.Pakistani Ahmadis can be arrested simply for saying, “Assalam-o-ALikum (peace be upon you)” .
The United Nations Sub-Commission on Human Rights and numerous human rights organizations have all called for the repeal of all criminal laws, which prohibit the religious freedom of the Ahmadiyya Community in Pakistan.