A Sikh delegation from the United States has met with Shahbaz Bhatti, Pakistan's Minister of Minority Affairs, to discuss minority rights and humanitarian aid relief for minorities in Pakistan.
The delegation also discussed how Sikhs in the US and elsewhere may advise and promote dialogue between the Sikh community and the government of Pakistan to recognize, restore and preserve historic sites and Gurdwaras (Sikh places of worship).
The minister is reported to have welcomed the comments the Sikhs made at the meeting and urged them to continue working together with the government of Pakistan to resolve these concerns. He emphasised the importance of the international Sikh communities' involvement in advising and supporting the government's efforts.
The Sikh community was represented by United Sikhs, Voices for Freedom, Guru Gobind Singh ji Foundation, Sikh Youth of America, American Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee and Sikh Gurdwara of Greater Washington.
United Sikhs has been working extensively with internally displaced persons in Pakistan who have been affected by the ongoing violence and instability on the western border of the country.
Commenting on their humanitarian initiative, Harpreet Singh, United Sikhs' Legal Director declared: "We have been working for the last three months to help and provide aid for the displaced persons in Pakistan. We will continue to work with United Nations and the government of Pakistan to help and improve the lives of these innocent families who are victims of hatred and extremism."