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mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
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» 09/07/2012
PAKISTAN - ITALY
"I am very happy for my daughter's liberation," Rimsha Masih's father tells AsiaNews
by Dario Salvi
In an interview with the family of the girl accused of blasphemy, who was released today on bail, Misrek Masih said, "my world collapsed. I was scared." He thanks APMA activists for their work. Faith in Jesus helped him find hope. Paul Bhatti thanks his brother Shabbaz for showing "me the path to follow."

Rome (AsiaNews) - "I am very happy for my daughter's liberation," said Misrek Masih, Rimsha's father, as he spoke to AsiaNews. "I am grateful from the bottom of my heart" for what the Catholic activists from the APMA and Minister Paul Bhatti did, "working tirelessly for her release." The mentally disabled girl was arrested in mid-August on blasphemy charges stemming from allegations that she had desecrated pages of the Qur'an. This morning an Islamabad court ordered her release on bail after reports surfaced that an imam had fabricated accusations against her in order to ignite hostilities against the local Christian community and take over their property. After days of tensions and fear, the girl's family can prepare to celebrate her release (after US$ 5,000 was posted for bail) and welcome her home.

AsiaNews contacted to Paul Bhatti, special advisor to the prime minister for national harmony, who, from a safe house, was instrumental in allowing us to talk to the girl's family.

"We are happy for the happy ending to the affair," an emotional Misrek said in whispering voice. The same goes for the rest of the family, Rimsha's mother and sisters, especially the youngest one, Neha who is seven. "We are very happy," she said repeatedly, "very happy that my sister has come home."

As he thinks back to what happened to his family, Misrek Masih said, "When I heard about the charges, which led to flight of 600 Christian families living in the suburb where we lived, my world collapsed. I was scared."

Despite everything, the Catholic family's faith in Jesus helped him find some of his lost sense of safety. Our "Hope and faith in Christ are strong," Rimsha's father said. "He brought us salvation through the work of the minister and all those who were actively involved in securing my daughter's freedom". Through Paul Bhatti, "the charity of Jesus because a visible sign."

Through AsiaNews, he sent a "special thanks" to all the activists and members of the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance (APMA) who worked on his daughter's behalf.

The organisation, which was founded by the late Shahbaz Bhatti, Pakistan's Minority Affairs minister who was killed by Muslim extremists in March 2011, is currently headed by his Paul Bhatti.  

Misrek Masih also expressed "A special thanks to the government of Pakistan and the police" for what they did.

In this moment of joy, Paul Bhatti dedicated a moment of reflection to his brother Shabbaz. "He is guiding my work," the special national harmony advisor said. "He showed me the path to follow for this case to be solved in a positive manner."

Besides praising the government and the police, the Pakistani Catholic federal minister had some thoughts for all those in Italy who support his action, like the "bishop of Vittorio Veneto (Treviso province) and the Community of Sant'Egidio."

 


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See also
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
09/01/2012 PAKISTAN
Pakistan, Rimsha Masih bail hearing adjourned
by Shafique Khokhar
11/20/2012 PAKISTAN
Pakistani Christians happy about Rimsha Masih verdict, Islamists talk about "manipulation"
by Jibran Khan
08/29/2012 PAKISTAN - ITALY
As Rimsha Masih waits for her fate to be decided, Christian activists campaign for her release

Editor's choices
EGYPT - ISLAM
What Tayeb and Sisi said is big step towards a revolution in Islam
by Samir Khalil SamirThe grand imam of Al-Azhar slammed literalist interpretations of the Qur'an and the Sunnah, as fundamentalists and Islamic terrorists do. He supports the urgent need for Islam's reform, especially in terms of teaching lay people and clerics. He also calls for an end to mutual excommunication (takfir) between Sunnis and Shias. Egyptian President al-Sisi chose to fight the Islamic state group after it beheaded 21 Coptic Christians, whom he called "Egyptian citizens" with full rights.
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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