Kidnapped Christian Girl Forced To Marry, Convert in Pakistan

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News

(Worthy News) - A Christian girl abducted in Pakistan more than six weeks ago was forcefully converted to Islam and married to her kidnapper, Christian activists told Worthy News.

Samina Bibi, the mother of Shakina Johnson, 13, reportedly said police “are not making enough effort” to recover her kidnapped daughter.

Bibi is “understandably upset, and every passing day is devastating for the family. The well-being of Shakina is unknown,” added the family supporting Centre for Legal Aid, Assistance and Settlement (CLAAS).

A suspect, publicly identified as Ali Sher, allegedly kidnapped the girl on February 19. The kidnapper took the girl to the Pakistani city of Depalpur after he forced her to convert to Islam and marry him, CLAAS confirmed.

Her mother explained that “Shakina is only 13, but a certificate given to the family stated that she is 18 years old,” Worthy News learned. After Shakina’s ‘conversion’ to Islam, her name was changed from Shakina to Shazia Bibi, Christians said.

The marriage followed life-changing difficulties that began February 19 when Shakina started to work with her mother, supporters recalled. “Both [Bibi] and Shakina are domestic workers. Late in the afternoon [Bibi] went to pick her daughter up from the house where she worked, but Shakina wasn’t there,” said CLAAS in a statement.


After Bibi asked the employer about her daughter's whereabouts, she was told that Shakina had already left. “She was shocked because Shakina never went anywhere alone,” CLAAS said, adding that search efforts were “all in vain.”

“Nobody knew that we would lose our daughter one day,” Bibi said in remarks distributed by CLAAS. “There is not much hope from the police, but we hope to get justice from the court.”

CLAAS said Shakina is one of four children next to “Nasir, 16, who is in 8th grade... Mahwish, 12, who is in 3rd grade and Shamoun, 7, is in first grade.”

Her husband is a cleaner in another town while Bibi worked as a housemaid for the last few years, CLAAS explained. Shakina joined her mother to improve the family’s financial condition, according to Christians familiar with the case.

Nasir Saeed, director of CLAAS-UK, suggested that the case “highlights” the Pakistani police corruption, “especially in cases such as these.”


Underage Christian girls in Pakistan’s Punjab province and Hindu girls in Sindh continue to be targeted, according to ho rights activists. “Perpetrators often get away without being punished because of loopholes in the laws. Families are poor and have no resources to challenge them in the court,” CLAAS added.

Since January 2021, at least four Hindu and five Christian girls were abducted and forcibly converted to Islam, according to rights investigators. “While these are the reported cases, the actual number could be much higher,” CLAAS warned.

Attacks targeting minority Christians and other minorities have increased
in the Muslim -majority nation, Christians said.