On 6 May, a seminar on forced marriages took place simultaneously in Oslo and Kharian via video link. This transnational seminar was a cooperation between the Pakistani Embassy in Oslo and the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Islamabad. The Pakistani ambassador to Norway – Her Excellency Ms Riffat Masood, wanted to highlight that forced marriage is a harmful practice, and one that unfortunately still happens within the Pakistani diaspora.
Dia Praxis welcomed the participants in Oslo and Kharian. Ambassador Masood opened the seminar from Oslo. Other speakers, including state secretary Laila Bokhari, Akhtar Choudry (IMDI), Mr. Salman Sufi (SRU), Mr. Ali Randhawa (DC Gujrat), Mr. Jamshed M. Kazi (UN Women), individuals and representatives from different organisations, made valuable contributions to the two-hour long seminar. The Norwegian ambassador to Pakistan, His Excellency Mr. Tore Nedrebø, made the closing remarks. In Kharian, 300 men, women and youth from Gujrat, Jhelum and Mandi Bahauddin attended the seminar. Several organisations in Norway and Pakistan were involved in the seminar. The Embassy in Islamabad would especially like to thank AMA Welfare Society, IHSG/Al Munir and Dia Praxis.
The Embassy has also developed a brochure with information on your right to decide about your own life. If you are in need of help, the brochure also includes contact details of Norwegian and Pakistani authorities and organisations.