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» 04/12/2006
PAKISTAN
Church condemns Karachi bomb blast and joins Muslims for peace
by Qaiser Felix
Archbishop of Karachi Evaristo Pinto tells AsiaNews that "our sympathies go to those who have lost their dear ones and are in mourning. Our people are with them to bring about reconciliation, harmony and unity".

Karachi (AsiaNews) –  On behalf of the Catholic Church of Karachi, Mgr Evaristo Pinto, archbishop of Karachi, condemned the bomb blast at Nishtar Park that left a trail of death and destruction and prays for all those who lost their life, God's most precious gift.

The archbishop spoke to AsiaNews in the wake of yesterday's twin suicide attack in the southern part of the city, which like the country is predominantly Sunni, where the faithful had gathered to celebrate the birth of the prophet Muhammad.

According to public officials, one or two suicide bombers blew themselves up under a stage where leaders of the Sunni Tehrik group were leading evening prayers before some 50,000 people. Unofficial sources have put the death toll at 57 with dozens of wounded.

"Our sympathies go to those who have lost their dear ones and are in mourning," Archbishop Pinto said. "May the Lord console them and be their support and strength."

"We wish to assure the citizens of Karachi that our people are with them to bring about reconciliation, harmony and unity," the prelate added.

Among the dead were several locally well-known leaders of Jamaat-e-Ahle Sunnat, which has hundreds of thousands of followers. To prevent further violence, city officials ordered schools and offices closed.

General Pervez Musharraf, president of Pakistan, told the nation "that those responsible shall not go unpunished" but he also urged foreign business franchises like US fast food outlets to remain closed during the investigations.

Karachi has been the scene of several bombings and other attacks against the Americans since Pakistan became a key US ally after the September 11 attacks.


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See also
10/19/2007 PAKISTAN
“I was on the truck with Bhutto when all hell broke loose,” said Shahbaz Bhatti
by Qaiser Felix
04/13/2006 PAKISTAN
Gospel of Judas interesting for history, not theology
by Qaiser Felix
03/02/2006 PAKISTAN
US diplomat killed by car bomb ahead of Bush visit
07/23/2007 PAKISTAN – USA
Islamabad rejects idea that US troops cross into Pakistan
11/06/2007 PAKISTAN
Judge Chaudhry calls for a popular “uprising”

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SAUDI ARABIA - ISLAM
For head of Al-Azhar, religious education reform is needed to stop Islamic extremismFor Ahmed al-Tayeb, it is urgent to come up with new educational programmes to avoid "corrupt interpretations" of the Qur'an and Sunnah. Islamic terrorism undermines the unity of the Muslim world. He blames Mideast tensions on a "new global colonialism allied to world Zionism". a speech by the Saudi king is read at the conference.
HONG KONG - CHINA - VATICAN
It looks like someone is trying to shout us down
by Card. Joseph Zen Ze-kiunThe widespread optimism concerning the dialogue between the Holy See and China is largely groundless. Some Chinese bishops unable to speak freely are asked "leading" questions. The key issues remain unresolved, namely episcopal appointments and the fate of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association. Benedict XVI's Letter to Chinese Catholics, also cited by Pope Francis, provides guidelines. No agreement is better than a bad agreement. What happened to Msgr. Cosma Shi Enxiang and Msgr. James Su Zhimin? Hong Kong's bishop emeritus, champion of religious freedom in China, delivers a vibrant reflection.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
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