Saturday, March 5, 2011

Christians in Pakistan Fearful After Assassination of Second Pakistani Official

On March 2nd, the last remaining Christian Pakistani official, Shahbaz Bhatti, was assassinated while getting into his car headed for work. Apparently, a car drove up and a group of gunmen rang out a total of 50 shots, twenty of which ended up wounding Bhatti. The driver was not injured, but drove Bhatti to the nearest hospital. Bhatti did not survive; he died on the way there. The government had provided security for Bhatti, but they were not present when the assassination took place. The gunmen littered pamphlets on the lawn just after the shooting, stating that this was done because of Bhatti's opposition to the blasphemy law. This year, this is the second assassination of a Pakistani official for opposing the law. Here is a report from Christianity Today:

Christians in Pakistan are fearful after the assassination yesterday of Minorities Minister Shahbaz Bhatti.

The minority Christian community took to the streets to protest after Mr Bhatti, the country’s only Christian minister, was murdered by gunmen outside his parents’ home in the capital Islamabad.

‘Rashid’, a Christian campaigner, whose name has been changed for security reasons, told Release International he was “heartbroken” by news of his close friend’s death.

He demanded justice on behalf of Mr Bhatti and Pakistani Christians, who are even more fearful for their safety.

Rashid fears that if the government is unable to protect its own ministers then ordinary Christians are even more at risk.

“Shahbaz was a government servant and it’s the responsibility of government to keep him safe,” he said.
“When a minister is not secure, what is the position of Christians?

“We are like the sheep – extremists can come and slaughter us. We have no cause, no weight.”
He said the government was not taking its responsibility to protect Christians seriously enough.....
Yaqub Masih, President of UK Pakistan Christian Concern offered his prayers for Mr Bhatti and his family.
He said: “It is a very black day for the freedom of minorities in Pakistan when a Christian is martyred for standing up for human rights and freedom of speech.
“We pray for Mr Bhatti and his family and supporters at this difficult time.”

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your feedback; it's very important to me. If you have anything to add, please feel free to do so. Just keep the content clean and please be respectful. Thank you.