Rubbing salt into wounds: Protesting Christians beaten up, pastor, youth go missing

Published: September 24, 2013
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A Pakistani Christian who took to the streets after the Peshawar blast wrote "Stop killing Christians" on his hand. PHOTO: REUTERS

A Pakistani Christian who took to the streets after the Peshawar blast wrote "Stop killing Christians" on his hand. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: 

Christian residents of Iqbal Town were allegedly beaten up by unidentified men on Monday evening for participating in protests against Sunday’s carnage in a Peshawar church.

An Iqbal Town resident, who requested anonymity, said he was an eyewitness to the episode. The resident, said several men thrashed seven or eight Christian youths with batons outside the Unitarian Church in the neighbourhood. The men had their faces covered, the resident said. Some of the victims, including Pastor Safir, were missing, the resident claimed.

Another Christian resident of the neighbourhood alleged police complicity in the incident. The second resident claimed police were trying to ‘teach’ the Christian community a lesson for two consecutive days of protests on the Islamabad Highway. The resident alleged police had stationed a mobile van near the area’s taxi stand and were nabbing any Christians that went nearby.

Iqbal Town has a significant Christian population and the community has led some of the strongest protest rallies in the capital over the past couple of days.

Officers at the Shehzad Town police station said they had not received any reports about the thrashing incident. They denied detaining Christians but said police personnel have been deployed at Iqbal Town because of the recent protests.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 24th, 2013.

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Reader Comments (16)

  • Blunt
    Sep 24, 2013 - 9:15AM

    We denounce it strongly, if it happended. However, ET please highlight the solidarity to victims and condemnation to attacks showed by majority of Pakistani people from all religions, sects and classes all over the country, rather than just putting in headline a random incident reported two unknown persons.

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  • irony
    Sep 24, 2013 - 9:32AM

    My god!!! Pakistan doesn’t deserve to be a country…a dastardly act!!

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  • Kamran Khan
    Sep 24, 2013 - 9:56AM

    Why does ET not give space to the news of vandalism of mashing cars’ windscreens and looting of people stuck in traffic jam at Esa Nagri at the hands of christian “protestors”?? Attack on church is deplorable but there’s been hundreds of such attacks on Muslims’ mosques and imambargahs. However our desi media as usual is acting abnormal and hiding the vandalism during the protests against ordinary citizens who themselves are victims of terrorism

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  • Ali Zaid
    Sep 24, 2013 - 9:58AM

    This is not acceptable at all! This situation will eventually lead the minorities to take up arms and defend themselves. Every Pakistani was already in shock and this treatment with protesters has even furthered it.

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  • Salman
    Sep 24, 2013 - 10:25AM

    this is exactly our enemy wants to achieve…. so far they are successful.

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  • Zian
    Sep 24, 2013 - 10:32AM

    stop killing muslims I must say that

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  • Muhammad Saim
    Sep 24, 2013 - 11:12AM

    Shame on all the Nation !!

    Lost of words…..

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  • asim
    Sep 24, 2013 - 12:28PM

    A government which has failed to protect the majority can not be expected to protect and safeguard minorities. Everyone is in blood bath

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  • waqas bashir
    Sep 24, 2013 - 2:09PM

    it is a very sad incident and clearly it is a move to create chaos all over the country. but since iqbal town is christian majority area, these intruders beating Christians should have been arrested by the local and taught a lesson

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  • Canadian
    Sep 24, 2013 - 7:51PM

    @ Kamran Khan:
    Why does ET not give space to the news of vandalism of mashing cars’ windscreens and looting of people stuck in traffic jam at Esa Nagri at the hands of christian “protestors”??

    What happens when your own people protest for attacks on your mosques and imambargah, they do the same, they not only paralyze the cities but loot the banks, offices, shops and vandalize too. You desi media hides the same for you people.

    The attack is not only on Christians or any other community but it is on Pakistan and you should not be judging anyone based on your religious ideology.

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  • Weirdity
    Sep 24, 2013 - 8:28PM

    Where is the christian version of Jinnah to save the Christians from Muslim Pakistanis the same way Jinnah saved Muslims of India from Hindus? :-)

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  • ABKhan
    Sep 24, 2013 - 10:15PM

    @Canadian:

    “What happens when your own people protest for attacks on your mosques and imambargah, they do the same, they not only paralyze the cities but loot the banks, offices, shops and vandalize too. You desi media hides the same for you people.”

    At that time ET give maximum space to show that. That was the original question, why not ET gave the same importance to vandalism this time? Wouldn’t it be better if next time you try to comment after understanding the statement?

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  • anusha
    Sep 24, 2013 - 11:16PM

    ET has the best censor system in the world!!!

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  • Canadian
    Sep 25, 2013 - 12:31AM

    @ moderator, why you didn’t post my reply to @ ABKhan

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  • Yasin
    Sep 25, 2013 - 12:25PM

    @Weirdity

    You have a point.Actually Muslims and Christians are two nations. If Quaid was alive today, he would certainly have given the Christians a separate country carving out of Pakistan, where the Christian could freely practice their religion, without having to worry about being blown up.

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  • Lauren
    Sep 29, 2013 - 2:52AM

    Thank God I don’t live in Pakistan. It’s just not safe for Christians. I’ll never go there

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