The US State Department has called on Pakistan to take immediate action after an American citizen was killed in Pakistan’s courtroom.
Tahir Ahmad Naseem, from the minority Ahmadi community, was shot dead in a courtroom in Peshawar. He was was arrested two years ago on blasphemy charges.
“Condolences to family of Tahir Naseem, an American citizen who was killed today inside a courtroom in Pakistan. We urge Pak to take immediate action and pursue reforms that will prevent such a shameful tragedy from happening again,” Bureau of South & Central Asian Affairs, US State Department said in a Tweet
The assailant, identified as Khalid Khan who managed to get into the court amid tight security was arrested later.
Ahmadis, a four million-strong minority group in Pakistan, have faced death, threats, intimidation and a sustained hate campaign for decades.
Pakistan’s controversial blasphemy law carries an automatic death penalty for anyone convicted of insulting God, Islam, or other religious figures. Many members of the minority communities in Pakistan – the Ahmadis, Hindus, Christians and Sikhs were charged with draconian blasphemy law.