As we have documented many times here at ChristianPersecution.com, the kidnapping and forced conversion of young Christian and other girls from religious minority groups in Pakistan is all too common. Kidnapping, forced conversion, and forced marriage of Christian and Hindu girls in Pakistan takes place repeatedly. Authorities for the most part turn a blind eye and frequently refuse to help the victims at all.
Pakistan’s small and courageous Orthodox Christian community is as vulnerable to this persecution as are the rest of Pakistan’s Christians.
For previous coverage of forced conversions and the persecution of Christians in Pakistan in general, see here.
“Two teenage Christian sisters in Punjab, Pakistan forced convert to Islam and marry Muslims,” Barnabas Fund, September 21, 2021:
Two sisters, both Christians, were abducted and forced to marry two Muslim cousins and convert to Islam, according to Barnabas Fund contacts in Punjab, Pakistan.
Arooj, 18 years old, and Kinza, 14, were kidnapped on 29 June from Lahore, and taken to their captors’ home town of Mian Channu in the district of Khanewal.
Arooj, who was released on 12 July, reported that their captors had threatened to kill her and her sister if they did not go through with the marriage and forced conversion. Kinza, who escaped in September, said that she too had been threatened.
Arooj gives her account of being threatened with death and forced into marriage and conversion to Islam
Both girls are now in a safe place, and the Centre for Legal Aid Assistance and Settlement have filed to have the marriages annulled.
Police have registered a case against two Muslim men, 21-year-old Abdul Rauf and 22-year-old Muhammad Shakir, who allegedly forced Arooj and Kinza to marry them. Other members of the family have also been charged.
Both men had a history of harassing the two girls when they and their family lived in Mian Channu, a situation which forced the Christian family to move to Lahore.
The abductors agreed to release Arooj after the girls’ father, Aslam Masih, asked local leaders in Mian Channu to put pressure on the family to hand them over; however, Kinza was kept in captivity and held for a further month before she had opportunity to escape.
Non-Muslim girls and young women in Pakistan are frequently kidnapped and forced to convert to Islam before being compelled to marry a Muslim, but the authorities do not always intervene.
In August another Christian, 16-year-old Muqadas Nadeem Masih, was abducted from her own home in Shorkot in Punjab and forced into marriage with a Muslim after being forced to convert to Islam.