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    » 07/16/2012, 00.00

    PAKISTAN

    Christians condemn the killing of Muslim man for blasphemy in Punjab

    Imran Morris

    Some 3,000 people, mostly madrassa students, set fire to Ghulam Abbas for ripping some pages of the Qur'an. The victim was mentally disabled. The silence of the authorities and police is upsetting, Christian activist says.

    Lahore (AsiaNews) - Pakistani Christians have condemned the silence of Punjab's provincial government over the death of Ghulam Abbas, a disabled Muslim man who was burnt alive by a mob of 3,000 people for blasphemy. "It is upsetting that police did not arrest anyone even though a First Information Report (FIR) has been filed against the attackers," Christian social activist Safraz Clement said.

    Police arrested the victim, a homeless man in his forties, for questioning in Ghani Gnot (southern Punjab) after he ripped some pages of the Qur'an.

    Once news about the incident made the round of the region's mosques, a mob of 3,000 people gathered in front of the police station, demanding he be put to death.

    The protesters, mostly students from local madrassas, eventually turned violent and stormed the station, injuring seven police agents. Several police vehicles were also set on fire.

    Once they grabbed the prisoner, they dragged him outside, beat him to a pulp and then set him on fire.

    Christians note that the blasphemy law has become a licence to kill since a simple accusation of insulting the Qur'an or the Prophet Muhammad is enough to become the victim of fundamentalists.

     

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    See also

    13/08/2012 PAKISTAN
    Christian leader falsely charged of blasphemy in Islamabad
    The complaint against him claims he sent text messages insulting Muhammad's mother. Legal experts say the case is flawed because charges were laid under the wrong section of the Criminal Code. Human rights activists pledge a battle in court. For Mgr Rufin Anthony, personal animosities are behind the case.

    03/08/2009 PAKISTAN
    Anti-Christian attacks “premeditated”, says archbishop of Lahore
    Mgr Saldanha calls for more decisive government action to protect the Christian minority, forced to “defend itself alone”. He launches an appeal “to protect the Christians of Pakistan.” Christian leaders shut down all Christian schools and institutions to protest the violence. The Pope sends a telegram for the victims.

    02/07/2007 PAKISTAN
    Punjab: “dangerous” to say Jesus is son of God
    Some Muslim extremists warned the Christian community: affirming the divine nature of Christ hurts the feelings of the Muslim community so prayers to the “supposed” son of God should cease immediately.

    04/08/2009 PAKISTAN
    Blasphemy laws, a pretext to attack Pakistan’s religious minorities
    The official death toll in the Gojra massacre now stands at eight. A 35-year-old man succumbs last night to injuries he sustained during the attack by Muslim fundamentalists. Rights activists and minority leaders believe the government condones such attacks by tolerating laws that punish offences against Islam. The Catholic Church of India and Geneva-based World Council of Churches express their solidarity with fellow Christians in Pakistan.

    20/09/2004 PAKISTAN
    Police brutality against Christians must be addressed at a political level

    Another youth tortured to death. Demonstrators hurt.





    Editor's choices

    CHINA – VATICAN
    Mgr Ma Daqin, the Vatican and the Patriotic Association’s “crooked logic”

    Gu Feng

    A priest in central China looks at the bishop of Shanghai’s volte-face, comparing him to John the Baptist who was jailed after he accused Herod. Because of their crooked logic, the Patriotic Association and the government seek to eliminate religion from the country. The Vatican is in danger of contradicting itself if it makes compromises with the Patriotic Association. Pope Benedict XVI described the latter as “incompatible” with Catholic doctrine in his Letter to Chinese Catholics, which Pope Francis has never disclaimed, but has instead reiterated.


    CHINA - VATICAN
    Mgr Ma Daqin’s volte-face, a cross to bear for the sake of Shanghai

    p. Pietro dalla Cina

    The auxiliary bishop of Shanghai holds dear the welfare of his diocese and intends to carry alone the burden of his statements of four years ago. Fr Lombardi’s clarification on the role of the Holy See dispels any doubt: the Letter of Benedict XVI to the Chinese Church is still valid; thus the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association's position is not accepted by the Vatican. A Chinese priest comments. Translation by AsiaNews.


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