31 July, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 02/28/2008
PAKISTAN
A new wave of extremism falling on Christians, says Mgr Saldanha
The archbishop of Lahore, who chairs the Bishops’ Conference of Pakistan, speaks out on new forms of violence against the country’s minorities: forced conversions, abductions and discrimination. He appeals to the government to protect Christians and treat them like other ordinary citizens.

Lahore (AsiaNews) – The chairman of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Pakistan, Mgr Lawrence John Saldanha, has called on the government to protect Christians from a new wave of violence that is falling on them. He stressed that the constitution protects freedom of religion and that the authorities are duty-bound to do something to stop threats and attempts by Muslim extremists to force the nation’s minorities to convert.

In an interview with Aid to the Church in Need he lamented the growing “hatred and intolerance” of militant groups. Their repeated attempts to force Christians to convert to Islam are not only violent in nature but also contravene the principles guaranteed in Pakistan's constitution.

For the archbishop of Lahore, the story of a young Catholic man is a case in point. The father of four was abducted last month by militants from Jamaat-ul-Dawah, an extremist group deemed terrorist. He was tortured in order to force him to become Muslim.

His case “underlines the difficulties and pressures of living in a land where extremism is growing,” where “there is little tolerance for people who are non-Muslims,” in particular for “Christians who live in remote and isolated towns [. . .]. Here the level of hatred and intolerance is even more intense.”

What is more distressing is the plight of Christian girls who are abducted and forced to marry their captors and change their religion.

This is something that has never happened before. We Christians are citizens, just like everyone else, and wish to have the same rights,” he said.  But sadly these events show what can happen when intolerance takes hold of an entire country.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
06/05/2008 PAKISTAN
Pakistani Church urges government to uphold the constitution against extremism
by Qaiser Felix
09/18/2006 PAKISTAN
Pope only wants inter-faith harmony, Pakistani bishops say
by Qaiser Felix
03/29/2005 PAKISTAN
Phone companies not allowed to hire women operators in Haripur
by Qaiser Felix
04/03/2008 PAKISTAN
Pakistani Church welcomes new government, hopes for real reforms
by Qaiser Felix
09/08/2004 PAKISTAN
Bishop Saldanha in Mariamabad says no to attacks against life and the family
by Qaiser Felix

Editor's choices
VATICAN
"Stop! I am asking you with all my heart. Stop!" says pope as he speaks out on the Middle East, Iraq and Ukraine He mentions children, victims of war, "from whom we take away the hope for a decent life," urging the parties to address "every diatribe with the tenacity of dialogue and negotiation and the power of reconciliation". As tomorrow marks 100 years since the outbreak of the First World War, "a day of mourning," we should learn the lessons of history. The Gospel makes us know the true Jesus, the living Jesus, who speaks to the heart and is a life changer as he was for Saint Francis of Assisi. "The joy of finding the treasure of the Kingdom of God comes through, can be seen. Christians cannot hide their faith."
IRAQ - VATICAN
Saddened by "the timidity of the civilised world," Baghdad patriarch's heart bleeding "for the innocent in Iraq, Syria and Gaza" "Forget us not!" says Mar Louis Sako in a message to Card Barbarin on the occasion of the march of solidarity with Iraqi Christians, held today in Lyon.
VATICAN
Pope: I am with the persecuted Christians of Mosul and the Middle East "May the God of peace inspire in all a genuine desire for dialogue and reconciliation. Violence is never defeated with violence. Violence is defeated with peace." At the Sunday Angelus Francis comments on the parable of the wheat and the weeds. God is "patient" He knows "the same weeds in the end, may become good wheat". But "at the time of the harvest, that is, of judgment, the reapers will execute the order of the master separating the weeds to be burned".

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.