ASIA/PAKISTAN - Paul Bhatti appointed “Special Advisor” for Religious Minorities

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Islamabad (Agenzi Fides) – Paul Bhatti, brother of murdered Minister Shahbaz Bhatti, was today appointed “Special Advisor” for Religious Minorities by the Prime Minister of Pakistan, to manage the affairs of religious minorities at a federal level. The Special Advisor will have the same executive powers as a Minister, and in the coming days he will make his official oath for the new position. Government sources in Pakistan revealed this to Fides. The news, which is still awaiting official confirmation, is already circulating in the Christian community and in civil society, which warmly welcomed the choice of the Pakistani government, anticipated in the days leading up to it as an “advanced proposal by the executive”. Bhatti has withdrawn his last reserves, after the Government confirmed full powers to continue his brother's mission, for the defence of minority rights. Paul Bhatti is a doctor and has lived in Italy for several years. Recently having returned to Pakistan, he was elected the new Director of the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance (APMA), the network founded by Shahbaz Bhatti in 2002 for the defence of religious minorities. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 24/3/2011)