Pence Plans to Press for Action on Rahman

Rep. Mike Pence (R.-Ind.), chairman of the Republican Study Committee, will introduce a congressional resolution next week calling on Afghanistan to dismiss the case against Abdul Rahman.

Here’s what Pence had to say:

"Religious and political freedom is the bedrock of any democratic society," said Pence.  "After liberating Afghanistan from the murderous and tyrannical regime of the Taliban, America cannot stand idly by while the very freedoms for which we fought are trampled by radicals.

"The American soldier and the American people won freedom for the people of Afghanistan, including the freedom of religion.  The Afghan people deserve more and the American people expect no less from our cherished ally Afghanistan."

In addition to calling upon Afghan authorities to dismiss the case, Pence’s resolution:

  • Condemns, in the strongest possible terms, the existence of laws against apostasy and their enforcement, either in the context of family disputes or otherwise.
  • Requests President Bush to continue actively to seek the dismissal of this case and to work with officials in Afghanistan to establish better protections for religious minorities, including converts to minority religions.
  • Urges President Bush to work with the government of Afghanistan to enhance human rights protection in Afghanistan.
  • Calls upon the government of Afghanistan, and especially President Hamid Karzai, to conform their existing laws and practices to Afghanistan‘s international obligations, thereby ensuring that Afghan citizens who have converted or plan to convert to other religions do not face prosecution.