29 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


» 05/04/2011
PAKISTAN
Bin Laden’s death, a “strong symbolic message” in the fight against terrorism, Mgr Saldanha sa
For the archbishop emeritus of Lahore, it is “too soon” to understand what repercussions Bin Laden’s disappearance will have on the country’s Christian minority. However, security is being tightened around churches and Catholic Schools. Extremist groups pray for Osama, martyr and “hero of Islam”. PM Gilani calls for help in the fight against terrorism, the country’s “number one” problem.

Islamabad (AsiaNews) – It “is good that a serious and dangerous threat to world peace and peace in our region has been eliminated”. Even if “it doesn’t mean the end of al Qaeda, [. . .] it does send a strong symbolic message,” said Mgr Lawrence John Saldanha, archbishop emeritus of Lahore, who spoke to AsiaNews about the killing of Osama Bin Laden on Monday. In Pakistan tough, radical Muslim groups organised prayers and demonstrations in Karachi and Peshawar in memory of the “martyr”. In Punjab, top police officials are warning of possible terrorist attacks, whilst Pakistani Prime Minister Gilani has called on the world to help Pakistan in its fight against extremism, which he described as the nation’s “number one” problem.

For Mgr Saldanha, Bin Laden’s death has raised some hope for “peace and stability;” however, “it is too early to say what will be the effects on the Christian minority.” In fact, “people are still stunned, refusing to accept that Osama has really died. They say that it might be a trick. We cannot know for sure. But educated people believe the news.”

In Karachi, Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jamat ul Dawa, which are banned organisations, yesterday offered funeral prayers for Bin Laden whose “martyrdom will not be in vain.” Other groups also slammed the death of the extremist leader. In Peshawar, a crowd met to celebrate the ‘hero of Islam’. “Martyrdom is not a defeat,” a Lashkar-e-Taiba spokesman said, “but a matter of pride for Muslims. [. . .] May Allah accept the sacrifice of Osama Bin Laden.”

“Protests and demonstrations might take place in the next few days,” Archbishop Saldanha noted. The ruling party and top military brass will likely be targeted for cooperating with the United States.

For the archbishop emeritus of Lahore, “the government has taken extra security measures for schools and churches” and he trusts that “there will not be any attacks or violence”

However, anonymous Catholic sources told AsiaNews that “some groups are promoting a campaign of religious intolerance.” Still, it would be better not to stir up fears because “any news made public too soon might lead to incidents. It is better not to spread rumours based on biases”.

Al Qaeda’s founder and leader Osama Bin Laden was killed on Monday during a military operation by US Special Forces in Abbottabad, about 60 kilometres from Islamabad.

Some sources said that he died from a gunshot to the head fired by one of his bodyguards to prevent his capture. One of his daughters is saying that he was taken initially alive but later killed by US Special Forces at the start of the operation.

In Pakistan, a political storm is raging over whether the authorities in Islamabad knew about the US action or not. Questions remain in fact, as to how Bin Laden could be living undisturbed and undetected in one of the most militarised and high security zones of the country.

With Bin Laden dead, a top police official in Punjab is warning that terrorists might hit out at foreigners as well as leaders of religious minorities present in the province. Similarly, intelligence agencies have raised the alarm level and increased their monitoring extremist groups.

Survey results published in the Pakistani daily The Dawn indicate that 64 per cent of its readers believe that Bin Laden’s death will lead to a significant rise in terrorist attacks in Pakistan.

In view of the situation, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani has appealed to the world to help Pakistan in its fight against terrorism, the nation’s “number one” problem.

Echoing these words, Pakistan’s Communication Minister Firdos Ashiq Hussain said, “Pakistan has paid the heaviest price in the war against terror”.

Lastly, President Asif Ali Zardari insisted that his government did not provide the al Qaeda leader any help or protection, dismissing claims claiming otherwise as “baseless speculation”. (DS)

(Jibran Khan contributed to the reporting)


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
05/02/2011 PAKISTAN
Christians are an “easy target” for reprisal after Bin Laden’s death, says Mgr Saldanha
09/06/2012 PAKISTAN
Islamabad expels six foreign Save the Children aid workers
03/04/2009 ISLAM - PALESTINE
Islamic countries reject al Qaeda, but also American policy
01/12/2007 PAKISTAN - US
Pakistan: “US hasn't shared information on al Qaeda leaders”
06/15/2011 PAKISTAN – UNITED STATES
Islamabad arrests five CIA informants who spied on Bin Laden

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.