Hundreds of people are expected to protest in Pakistan to demand justice for a 12-year-old Christian girl found dead in a canal in a case of suspected rape.
Tania Mariyam Gill was found dead in the Upper Chenab Canal in January. Police opened a murder investigation after pressure from her family and the British Pakistani Christian Association (BPCA) and an autopsy was approved earlier this month.
'We hope Christians from across the nation will join us in support of justice for Tania Mariyam,' said Wilson Chowdry of the BPCA. 'Moreover this girl was a daughter of Pakistan so any people from other faiths shocked by the police insouciance and ongoing court delays are welcome to join in solidarity."
The BPCA is calling for a judicial review of the case and for CCTV footage from Tania Mariyam's last moments alive at her school to be released. The association has also launched a petition.
Nadeem Gill, Tania Mariyam's father, said: 'The police and courts of Pakistan have failed my beautiful daughter. Their delay may have destroyed any chance of proving she was poisoned.
'Despite several attempts to obtain the last video footage of Mariyam alive from the Convent of Jesus and Mary School, I still have not seen it.'
He added: 'I pray many of you will join us as my heart is full of sorrow and I cannot rest until the man who murdered my daughter is brought to justice. Please help me capture her killer if not he may kill and rape many other girls and other fathers will be in the same position as me.'
The protest will be at the Sailkot press club in Sialkot, Pakistan on April 1.
Chowdhry said: 'Christians have to show more unity if we are to defeat the ongoing attempts to supress our community. When an injustice occurs we cave in and just accept persecution and discrimination as if it is something we deserve – but that is not true.
'By coming together behind the cause of Tania Mariyam we speak out for an innocent Christian girl, killed before she could reach her prime. A girl who was murdered for her beauty and her vulnerability as a Christian.
'Tania Mariyam is the same age as my eldest daughter and as a father I have great empathy with Nadeem Gill – a father who feels alone and isolated in his campaign. I implore you all to help this struggling father to achieve justice for his daughter .'
Protest planned for 12-year-old Christian girl found murdered, possibly raped Ruth Gledhill 27 March 2017Tweet