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mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
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» 04/23/2009
PAKISTAN
Taliban attack Christians in Karachi
by Qaiser Felix
Six people are wounded by gunshots, including an 11-year-old boy, now in critical conditions. Residents in the area that was attacked have locked themselves in. the attack comes after pro-Taliban slogans, calling on Christians to convert to Islam, appear on church walls.

Karachi (AsiaNews) – Armed men yesterday attacked a group of Christians in Taiser Town, near Karachi. They set ablaze six Christian houses and injured three Christians, including an 11-year-old boy, who is in critical condition in the hospital, Fr Richard D’Souza told AsiaNews.. Taiser Town, which is home to about 750 Christian families including 300 Catholic families, is part of the Parish of St Jude in the Archdiocese of Karachi.

Two police officials, who spoke to AsiaNews on condition of anonymity, said that Qudoos Masih, one of the people injured in the incident, filed an initial report at the Sarjani Town police against unknown persons.

The police confirmed that seven suspects were arrested with heavy weapons on them. Police is still conducting its investigation and does not know who is behind the violence.

A policeman said that only three Christians were injured, including a minor who is in critical conditions. A Muslim from the group of attackers was also hurt.

Fr Pervez Khalid, assistant parish priest at St Jude’s Parish Church, told AsiaNews that no one was killed in the attack but that six people had gunshot wounds.

The situation is now under control, he added. Rangers and police and were patrolling the streets. Still people are very scared and dare not go out, especially after police advised them to stay in-door.

Father D’Souza, parish priest at St Jude’s, visited the area where the attack took place. There, he saw graffiti on the walls of the area’s two churches, saying ‘Taliban zindabad’ (Live long Taliban), ‘Islam zindabad’ (Live long Islam), ‘Christians Islam qabol karo’ (Christians, convert to Islam).

He also visited the torched Christian houses and saw that everything was burnt, including the residents’ Bibles.

He said that yesterday morning people who saw the graffiti came together to stage a street protest. As soon as they did so, they were attacked by a group of armed men who set the houses on fire and then walked down the streets damaging electrical wires and gas meters.

“The men who attacked the Christians came from outside; none of our faithful knew them,” Father D’Souza said.

Kiran Sobya, a 28-year-old Catholic woman living in the area, told AsiaNews that the situation had been tense for some time. In fact when she was setting off for Tuesday Mass she was told that the service had been cancelled.  

A bank teller by profession, she did not go to work today because of the tense situation. She did however confirm that yesterday many women and some men and children staged a protest against the anti-Christian graffiti on the churches’ walls.

The area has three churches, all built by the government to serve the different confessions (Catholic and Protestants).

The Catholic parish priest or his assistant usually visit the area to celebrate Mass every Tuesday.

Sources said that most members of the local congregation are very poor.


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See also
04/28/2009 PAKISTAN
Boy wounded in Taliban attack near Karachi dies
by Qaiser Felix
05/29/2006 PAKISTAN
Without evidence police arrest Christian on blasphemy charges
by Qaiser Felix
04/05/2007 PAKISTAN
Life of 11-year-old Christian in danger even though he is not charged with anything
by Qaiser Felix
06/09/2014 PAKISTAN
Islamist assault on Karachi airport: 24 dead, over 20 injured
06/10/2014 PAKISTAN

Pakistan pounds 'terrorist hideouts' after Karachi attack, 15 militants dead 


Editor's choices
IRAQ-ITALY
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul," the thanks of the Patriarch Louis Sako; the concerns of the Bishop of Kurdistan
by Bernardo CervelleraThe head of the Chaldean Church is grateful for the AsiaNews campaign and hopes that "this chain of solidarity will reach far and wide”. Helping refugees to remain in Iraq. But many want to flee abroad. The bishop of Amadiyah where thousands of displaced people have found haven in churches and homes: We also help the Arabs (Muslims), and Yazidis, for free and without looking at our confessional differences.
ITALY - IRAQ
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul" to respond directly to Iraq's emergencyAsiaNews is launching a fundraiser to support Christians targeted by the Islamic State, thus responding to a request by the Patriarch of Baghdad and Pope Francis's urgent appeal "to guarantee all necessary assistance - especially the most urgently needed aid - to the great multitude of people who have been driven from their homes, whose fate depends entirely on the solidarity of others." More than 100,000 people have been forced to flee their homes leaving everything behind and now have nothing to live on. To help them, five euros a day are enough. The funds raised will be sent to the Patriarchate of Baghdad, which will distribute them according to the needs of each family.
CHINA - VATICAN
Wenzhou bishop and priests slam government's campaign against crosses and churches in Zhejiang
by Eugenia ZhangFor Mgr Vincent Zhu Weifang, from the official Church, the campaign of destruction is increasing social instability. It is real persecution against the Christian faith. The bishop apologises for failing to intervene sooner. He was hoping that the campaign would end quickly. Catholics and Protestants suffer injuries as they attempt to defend their sacred buildings. For priests in Wenzhou, the campaign is unfair and touches buildings that have all the right papers. Such "stupid acts" by the government are undermining social harmony.

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pp. 176
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