20 January 2018
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  • » 12/18/2017, 14.42

    PAKISTAN

    Quetta, pastor of the Methodist Church: The faithful implored God's mercy (Video)

    Kamran Chaudhry

    The story of the Bethel Memorial Methodist Church attack in the words of the rev. Simon Bashir. First the shots in the compound, then "the people hit the head that collapsed on the banks". The son of Salman Taseer: "Death clinics supported by internal extremists and financed by the collection of taxes from the victims themselves".

    Lahore (AsiaNews) -  “Suddenly I heard the firing in church compound. The worshippers panicked and cried loud for God’s mercy. Seconds later, the windows shattered with explosion at the door. Some people were injured with ball bearings from the bomb. Those who were hit in the head collapsed on church benches,” says Pastor Bashir speaking to AsiaNews. When two suicide bombers stormed into the Bethel Memorial Methodist Church of Quetta, capital of south western province, Balochistanch province, Pastor Bashir was opening the altar gate to distribute communion. (see video).

    Nine worshippers, including four women were killed and 57 were injured when two suicide bombers attacked the Methodist church yesterday. The building, riddled with bullets, has been sealed by the authorities. Pastor Bashir held the funerals of the victims this afternoon.

    “Thanks to our young volunteers and police guards, the terrorists could not enter inside the church hall packed with more than 400 people, including 80 children from Sunday school. We are still waiting for government representatives, Balochistan Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri is expected to meet us today,” he said.

    The tragedy has dampened Christmas celebrations across the country. The Cecil and Iris Chaudhry Foundation CICF cancelled the annual Christmas program of the CICF Education Center in Youhanabad Lahore scheduled to be held today.  

    “We are heartbroken, hurting and very angry, the state of Pakistan has once again failed to protect the lives and property of its citizens. We demand of the government to hold the perpetrators accountable. How many more lives can we lose? How many more families need to be shattered?” stated Michelle Chaudhry, president CICF in a press statement.

    “The governments both federal and provincial need to assert their powers and jointly work on a strategy to defeat human massacre caused by terrorism. We at The CICF stand in complete solidarity with the bereaved families and hold deep in our hearts all those who lost their precious lives in this dreadfully tragic incident in Quetta.”

    Shaan Taseer, son of slain Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer, also condemned the attack. The Muslim governor was assassinated in 2011 for criticizing the blasphemy laws while helping Asia Bibi, the Christian mother jailed for insulting Prophet Muhammad.

    “For any of my friends still suffering from a national ostrich syndrome thinking these well orchestrated attacks such as the #QuettaChurchAttack are the work of an outsider (RAW, CIA, Mickey Mouse or Kim Kardashian), I post a link to a letter from the LeJ declaring their involvement in such genocide and promising more”, he shared on his facebook page using cover photo of the Christmas tree and broken furniture at Methodist Church of Quetta.

    “Continual systematic and coordinated attacks like this are made possible because of a well funded and well protected infrastructure of recruitment and indoctrination clinics accross Pakistan, such as Dar Aloom Binori Town Karachi, Akhora Khattack KPK and Laal Masjid Islamabad. This network of murder clinics does not exist in the murky shadows of international espionage and subterfuge, but in broad daylight in Pakistans cities and is protected by Pakistan's police and paramilitary forces, paid for by the taxes collected from the very people they murder. The unit commanders of these clinics like Sami Ul Haq and Abdul Aziz [imam of Islamabad 'red mosque ' that calls for the Talibanisation of Pakistan – ed],are tied at the hip with all three mainstream political parties.” “It is an insult to our national intelligence to think that this infrastructure of genocide existing in full view of the nation, openly defended and apologised for by our civil and military leadership, is the machination of an outside power. The self delusion would be the equivalent of Germans during the 3rd Reich believing Auschwitz was an Anglo French conspiracy,” it concluded.

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    See also

    18/12/2017 10:03:00 PAKISTAN
    Quetta: Security tightened on places of worship after Methodist church attack (video)

    Yesterday’s attack on Bethel Memorial Methodist Church cost the lives of nine people attending the liturgical service. The Islamic State claims the attack. Christian and Muslim activists condemn violence and religious extremism.



    27/12/2017 18:43:00 PAKISTAN
    With churches under tight protection, Christmas celebrations held safely in Pakistan

    The government deployed soldiers, sharpshooters and policemen to prevent terrorist attacks like the one against Quetta’s Methodist church just over a week ago. The Chief of Army Staff took part in a celebration and praised Christians’ contribution to the country.



    09/08/2016 09:22:00 PAKISTAN
    Pakistani Church: Government must protect citizens' right to life

    After the massacre in Quetta, the Justice and Peace Commission recalls that the province of Balochistan has suffered more than 1,400 episodes of violence in the last 15 years: "The situation is unacceptable, and we will be at the side of the population". Civil movements demand Islamabad account for security.disaster. The hospital attack, claimed by ISIS and the Pakistani Taliban, killed over 70 people: more than 200 wounded.



    13/01/2016 PAKISTAN
    Quetta bomb against anti-polio clinic: 14 dead
    Most of the victims were security officers. Another 20 people injured. Taliban suspected, after having fought vaccination for years as a "Western conspiracy" to sterilize Pakistani children.

    23/12/2016 09:19:00 PAKISTAN
    Lahore, food and Christmas gifts to the victims in the Christian Quarter (VIDEO)

    The local Church and some NGOs have distributed basic necessities to hundreds of residents of Youhanabad, where in 2015 a double suicide attack caused 17 deaths. Many of those who have received aid have lost loved ones in the attack. On December 26, the local Church will visit those in prison.





    Editor's choices

    EGYPT – LEBANON
    Muslims and Christians meet in Cairo for Jerusalem, 'the cause of causes'

    Fady Noun

    A conference was held on 16-17 January at al-Azhar. Many prominent figures from Lebanon took part, including the Maronite Patriarch Bechara Al-Rahi. The Arab world is divided between "complicit passivity" and "noisy but ineffective speeches". For a former Lebanese premier, coordinated actions are needed to ensure greater efficacy on behalf of Jerusalem’s "pluralistic identity " and "religious freedom". Card Al-Rahi called for joint prayers, Islamic-Christian interfaith solidarity in the Arab world, and support for the Palestinians.


    CHINA
    Yunnan: Christians accused of membership in an apocalyptic sect get up to 13 years in prison



    The Three Grades of Servants cult, an underground pseudo-Protestant sect founded in Henan, is especially strong in the countryside. Those convicted claim they are just ordinary Christians and know nothing about the sect. Defense lawyers have been threatened with loss of their license to practice.


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