Sign this petition to defend the rights of people in the United Kingdom to change their religion or belief without fear of persecution from any opposing individual or community.
Nissar Hussain, his wife Kubra and six children have suffered persecution during the past 20 years after converting from Islam to Christianity. They live in Bradford but have endured a series of abuse and violence from local Islamists for 'apostasy' [changing religion] following their conversion. This persecution has even led to false allegations resulting in the couple being questioned at a police station. One police officer told Mr Hussain to, 'Stop being a crusader'. Police and local authorities did not give the family appropriate support and the perpetrators of the abuse have not been arrested.
The British Pakistan Christian Association is supporting the Hussain family. Please sign this petition calling on the UK governments and other authorities to properly defend the rights of citizens, such as Nissar and Kubra, to change their religion or beliefs without fear of persecution from any opposing individual or community – and for policies and procedures in the treatment of such people to be officially reviewed.
We, the undersigned, call upon the Prime Minister, First Ministers, Governments, official religious bodies including every church and mosque, and all local council authorities in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland to officially and publicly declare that punishment for 'apostasy' is not recognised at all under UK laws and people such as Nissar Hussein from Bradford are completely free to change their religion or faith beliefs as indicated by Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – freedom of religion – without fear of persecution in any form whatsoever, and any such virulent opposition by any individual or community to the rights enshrined under Article 18 deserves full condemnation and comprehensive investigations by police forces nationwide.
In addition, we call upon the UK governments to:-
- Review existing police and local authority policies, procedures and officers' training in regards to victims of apostasy
- Launch an official Home Office enquiry into the situations facing victims of apostasy, including asylum seekers, in the UK: how many are there? How are incidents of apostasy recorded? What support do authorities give them? What are the UK governments' policies to safeguard their legal standing with entitlement to protection from the state? How are communities, giving support to alleged apostates being targeted for abuse and violence, being dealt with by authorities?
- Review the professionalism of Bradford Police and city council authorities in regards to the ordeal suffered by the Hussain family: the treatment by police over the abuse and violence; a review as to why no arrest has been made; and an enquiry into how the family's interests can be safeguarded in the future.