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    » 08/30/2011, 00.00


    Rawalpindi: 13 year old Christian kidnapped during mass

    Jibran Khan

    For two days there has been no news of Daniel Sharoon. Security cameras and witnesses saw him enter the building, then all trace was lost. The family asks for prayers for his release. The police find no useful clues. In Faisalabad Koranic students attack a 64 year old Christian maid.
    Lahore (AsiaNews) - A 13 year old Christian from the Chak district of Layyah, Punjab province, disappeared on August 28. The suspicion is that he has been kidnapped, while listening to mass in the local Catholic Church in Rawalpindi. One priest reported the disappearance to the police, but so far officials have found no trace leading to the whereabouts of the boy. Meanwhile in Faisalabad, a woman aged 64 was attacked by a group of students from an Islamic religious school, because she organized prayer meetings in a district with a Muslim majority. In this regard, a Catholic priest invites Protestants not to "create problems for themselves" with acts that may be deemed provocative.

    13 year-old Daniel Sharoon, had been living for the past six months with his sister next to the Holy Family Hospital in Rawalpindi. Last Sunday the boy - as usual - went to the local Catholic church to attend mass with his family. Daniel's father John told AsiaNews that "my son came to church with us, but at the end of the ceremony was gone. We looked everywhere - he adds - but not even the guards in charge of security have seen him or noticed suspicious people wandering in the area. "

    Fr. Anwar Pastras, a priest of the Diocese of Rawalpindi, condemned the kidnapping of Sharoon, which he calls "a very strange" because "we have installed CCTV cameras" along the perimeter of the building and "we saw the boy enter, but we did not see him leave”. The priest explains that "there were no policemen at the entrances and exits" of the church, but "only our security personnel." "We think - said Father Pastras – he was been kidnapped in the church. " The priest reported the episode to the New Town police station, officers opened an investigation, but so far have no useful leads.

    The family is in shock and fears for his fate, his parents have asked for prayers for his return home safe and sound. The phenomenon of kidnapping Christian boys and girls is not an isolated: in March 2010 only 12 children have disappeared from the churches in the district of Kohat and from the Khyber PukhtunKhawa province.

    In a second incident, which occurred in Faisalabad (still in Punjab), a group of students from a local madrassa attacked Sakeena Bibi, a 64 year-old Christian maid. The woman had invited a few Christians from the area to pray at her home, located in an area with a Muslim majority, sparking the ire of the Koranic students. The family was forced to leave the area. While condemning the episode of intolerance, Fr. Javed Masih of Faisalabad diocese said that " but the protestant groups are creating problems from themselves by starting the mushroom Churches in the Muslim colonies." The priest adds that "the rest of the family has fled the city fearing life threats".

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    See also

    25/08/2011 PAKISTAN
    Punjab: Muslims kidnap 14 year old Christian to convert her to Islam
    Mehek Masih was taken from her home in broad daylight and under the threat of a gun. Muslim man intends to "purify her" making her "Muslim and my mistress." Archbishop Saldanha cases of this type are "frequent," the law does not protect minorities. One of the many "crosses" that Pakistani Christians have to endure.

    20/05/2011 PAKISTAN
    Punjab, anti-Christian violence: nurses sequestered, families evicted from home
    A Muslim colleague steals mobile phone and cash, then accuses two nurses of theft. The women, held in solitary confinement for nine hours, were subjected to physical violence. Muslims raid homes of two families in Gujrat. The episode ordered by a former lawmaker who wants to take possession of the land. Muslim doctors refuse treatment to Christian policeman.

    12/05/2011 PAKISTAN
    Mgr Saldanha Pakistani Christians oppressed by violence rediscover God
    Their situation is difficult and burdensome, many belong to lower social classes, hold menial jobs and are marginalized. Often relations with Muslims are of the "servant and master" nature. Archbishop Emeritus of Lahore: sense of anxiety and fear, but the Church is a source of consolation. "

    11/08/2012 PAKISTAN
    Remembering Benazir Bhutto and Shahbaz Bhatti, Pakistan celebrates minorities
    On 11 August, the 65th anniversary of the historic Ali Jinnah's speech to the Assembly, is the day dedicated to non-Muslims. Minister Paul Bhatti: "We are part of one nation" and the goal is to create "a prosperous and united Pakistan." Minorities’ integration in the political and social landscape of the country.

    25/07/2011 PAKISTAN
    The drama of Farah Hatim, common to many women in Pakistan
    A 24 year old Christian kidnapped, forced to convert to Islam and marry her kidnapper. In court later she says it was voluntarily, to protect her family. Hundreds of similar cases occur every year in Pakistan, denounced by the commission for Justice and Peace.

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