Pakistani Christians arrested in a new wave of asylum crackdown in Thailand

Written by Christian Malik

Several Pakistani Christians were arrested in a crackdown in a suburb of Bangkok after Police raided a residential block in morning hours on 23rd November
2016.  The arrests took place at  Samrong 64 during which 7 people including 3 children were taken form their liberty.

Bilawal Nasir (19), Aymen Nasir (15) and Jennifer Nasir (10), Mr. and Mrs. Daniel and mother of three children Saloomi with her 3 children of which
the oldest is 10 years old. The five children were released by the police later and custody was given to Mr. Yaqoob Ghori who is on bail and was able
to negotiate with the police on behalf of the families. The other 4 people including Bilawal, Mr. and Mrs. Daniel and Mrs. Saloomi are still waiting
to be taken to the court where their fines would be paid so they can evade being sent to Central jail. 

Babu Nasir, the father of Bilawal Nasir spoke to Christian Malik, our officer in Bangkok. He said, “I went outside with my wife to buy grocery for the day and when I came back home the police had arrested my children. I was very distraught by this and tried contacting my friends to pursue the local police station where my family had been locked up. Due to the sincere efforts of my friends, my  daughters were released but they didn’t release my son and others who were arrested along with him. I am praying that the police will show mercy and release them soon as the condition inside the IDC is already congested and can jeopardize the medical condition of those inside. These innocent souls would find it difficult to adapt to the harsh life inside the IDC. ” 

Yaqoob Ghori spoke on the phone with Christian Malik while going to the police station. He said, “We are very worried for the people arrested. They have been kept in a prison where there is no fan and ventilation is very poor. We have sent water supplies to keep them hydrated and we are trying all sorts of legal aid to mediate their release in the soonest possible time.” 

Christian Malik, said:

“There are 90 Pakistani Christian men and 35 women including children inside the IDC and the number keeps on increasing. We have been trying to emancipate 2 Pakistani Christians since September but the process has been very slow. These recent arrests will incorporate more threat to health condition of detainees and which will lead to more scarcity of water supplies. Along with this, the concerned charities who are visiting them inside IDC would find it difficult to find volunteers to visit and assist them with food supplies.” 

The families have appealed to the BPCA for the court fines of the 4 people arrested. The court fines range from £ 70 to £ 140
and we appeal to our donors to assist us in paying the overstay fines for these people. 

Picture from previous arrests when BPCA paid the overstay fines for the people arrested.