01/11/2021, 15.57
PAKISTAN
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Lahore, Christian sisters Sajida and Abida kidnapped, raped and murdered

They both worked in a pharmaceutical factory. The owner, Mohammad Naeem, and the supervisor Mohammad Imtiaz pressured them for marriage, promising wealth and demanding their conversion to Islam. But the women, married to two Christians, had refused.

Lahore (AsiaNews) - Two Christian sisters, 28-year-old Sajida and 26-year-old Abida, both married and with children, were kidnapped, raped and brutally murdered all because they refused to convert to Islam and marry their kidnappers.

Their mangled bodies were found in a sewer on 7 December. At present, only one of their murderers, Mohammad Naeem, has been arrested, has confessed and is now free on bail. The other, Mohammad Imtiaz, is still at large.

Sajida's husband, Mushtaq Masih, told AsiaNews: “This murder took place because we are poor Christian workers. We want these monsters [the two kidnappers] to be put in prison, according to the law. So others will be able to learn how women must be treated and respected, even if they are poor or belonging to a minority”.

On November 26, Sajida and Abida went to work in a nearby pharmaceutical factory. They both reside at Makhan Colony in Kahna (Lahore). But they never returned home and were only found on 7 December in the Rohi Nullah, a sewer canal.

Christian human rights lawyer, Sharjeel Masih, recalls the shock of the family members at seeing the bodies of the two women, who for months had refused the advances of the boss and supervisor of the drug factory.

Saleem Iqbal, an activist, says the two women have often complained of the owner of the factory, Mr. Mohammad Naeem Butt and supervisor Mohammad Imtiaz who were pressuring them to marry them by promising riches, and to convert to Islam. “They refused and said they were married and happy with their families, even if they had little. But after their refusal, Mohammad Naeem and Mohammad Imtiaz began to threaten them and then kidnapped them to achieve their purpose”.

Their family now fear that the justice system is too slow or that it will never be served. Punjiab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar has promised to take a personal interest and asked for a full report of the incident from the police. He also expressed his deep involvement in the family's mourning and assured him that he will try to do justice at any cost.

Meanwhile, Mushtaq Masih, the husband of one of the two murdered women, Sajida, speaks of the sadness of having to raise her three small children: “We are very worried - he tells AsiaNews - about our children. It is very difficult to rear them without their mothers ”. (S.K.)

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