RE - Increase in militancy and intolerance has increased the threats to human rights in Pakistan, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) said on Thursday.
A statement issued by HRCP on the eve of Human Rights Day said, December 10 is an occasion to reflect the challenges and opportunities for realisation of human rights in the country. This year growing militancy, extremism and intolerance have posed the main threat to the peoples rights.
Many of the old challenges to human rights in Pakistan have still present, as new ones, such as clandestine detentions and enforced disappearances, seem to have taken a firm root. For the second year in a row, the number of internally displaced persons in Pakistan was higher than the refugees. Extrajudicial killings and torture in jails and police stations continue. Unmanned drones also continue to be used for extrajudicial killings in Fata with no accountability and in complete absence of official statistics on the number of innocent civilians killed, it said.
It said among the positives this year, Pakistan ratified a number of important international human rights treaties, thus becoming a party to all key human rights instruments, and the 18th amendment was a good start in making much needed changes to the Constitution.
The commission said in 2010, journalists continued to pay the price for freedom of expression with their lives in all parts of Pakistan. The countrys prisons are at bursting point as alternatives to imprisonment continue to be overlooked.
Little headway has been made on the governments promises on abolition of the death penalty, although the informal moratorium on executions meant that no death penalty convict was executed this year.
However, continued award of death sentence pushed the number of death row prisoners above 8,000, the commission added.
The worsening economic conditions have taken their toll on the peoples ability to access basic needs and the countrys largely illiterate labour force has been the hardest hit amid growing unemployment, it further said.