PAKISTAN: POLICE WARN CHRISTIANS OF POTENTIAL TERRORIST ATTACK
Police in Pakistan have warned Christians that terrorists are planning an attack on their community following the Asia Bibi acquittal.
According to Agenzia Fides, the news agency of the Vatican, the Lahore Police Inspectorate warned Christians to be vigilant, claiming that terrorist groups such as Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan and Jamaat-ul-Ahrar have made plans for attack.
Pakistani Christians have remained uneasy since the Supreme Court announced the acquittal of Asia Bibi on 31 October. Bibi is a Christian woman who had been on death row since 2010 after being convicted of blasphemy. Her case continues to be one of the most contentious religious issues in Pakistan.
Following her acquittal, Muslim fundamentalists took to the streets in protest for three days, bringing the country to a standstill. Many Christians feared their community would become a target of the fundamentalists’ rage.
Muslim Fundamentalists protest Asia Bibi’s release. They swarm the streets and demand her execution.
Police and other security officers have been deployed to churches and Christian neighbourhoods to ward off potential attacks. Yet the threat of attack remains for this small and persecuted minority.
Asia Bibi currently remains in Pakistan, where she is in hiding. Several countries have offered Bibi asylum including Canada, Italy and Holland.
On Tuesday Bibi’s lawyer Saiful Mulook told a news conference in Frankfurt that Bibi was now free but that she and her family needed a passport to leave the country. He appealed to Germany to give her whole family citizenship to start a new life in Europe.
“Asia Bibi is out of prison, but not out of danger,”
Voice of the Martyrs Korea representative Hyun Sook Foley explains.
“In fact, now the danger has extended to the whole Christian community in Pakistan. We are one body with the Christians in Pakistan and should consider ourselves to be united with them in danger until God grants a solution.”
Representative Foley challenges the Korean church join their Pakistinian brothers and sisters in prayer.
“Pray that God protect the Pakistani Christian minority and that He give those in authority His favour and wisdom as they deal with the ongoing situation,” representative Foley requests. “Ask God to be with Sister Bibi so she may know God’s physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual healing. Pray, too, that God will help Sister Bibi and her family adapt to their current situation and have hope when looking forward to the future.”
“Most of all,” representative Foley adds, “pray that the world-wide attention to Asia’s case may bring change to the Pakistani legal system and society.
To learn more about the church in Pakistan, read Voice of the Martyrs Korea’s Pakistan country profile at https://vomkorea.com/en/country-profile/Pakistan/. You can also visit the Voice of the Martyrs Korea website (www.vomkorea.com) to read the profiles of the more than 70 other countries around the world where Christians are persecuted.