A 14-year-old Christian girl who lived in the Zia Colony located in Karachi, Pakistan has been kidnapped, forced to convert to Islam and then “married” off to a Muslim man.
According to multiple media outlets, Huma Younus was kidnapped by three men from her home Karachi in October. The men waited on her parents to leave the house before forcibly taking the young girl. She was reportedly taken to Dera Gazi Khan, a city in the Punjab province of Pakistan, more than 370 miles from her home.
Since she was taken, the girl’s parents have been doing everything they can to recover their daughter. Unfortunately, local law enforcement officials have not been any help. Christian Today reported the city police at first refused to file any type of complaint against the girl’s abductors, but finally, after numerous attempts by the parents, police officials did file a complaint.
The website also reports Huma’s parents received documents from the abductors a few days after she was taken, including papers showing her conversion to Islam and a marriage certificate. The girl’s mother Nagina says the papers are fake because the date on documents was the same as the day when her daughter was abducted.
Huma’s parents have appealed their case to the Court of Justice in Sindh Province. Their daughter was supposed to appear in court on Nov. 11, but she did not appear.
“We don’t even know if she’s still alive,” her parents said.
Father Saleh Diego, vicar general of the Archdiocese of Karachi and director of the National Commission for Justice and Peace (NCJP), wants the Pakistan government and courts to prevent such kidnappings and to ensure those responsible be brought to justice as soon as possible.
Tabasum, a local Christian attorney, says the case offends the Christian community as a whole. “These sacrilegious acts are against the concept of interfaith harmony and threaten society’s multicultural fabric and sense of brotherhood. Minorities feel deeply wounded,” she said.
The Younus family’s tragic case is not uncommon in Pakistan.
According to International Christian Concern, in the first nine months of this year, there were 34 incidents of abduction, forced conversions, rape and assault against Christian women and girls in Pakistan, exhibiting the widespread vulnerability of Christian women in the country.
Open Doors USA, a Christian persecution watchdog group, ranks Pakistan as the fifth-worst country in the world for its persecution of Christians.