The extent of the targeting of Christians, noted Gregory in a 2008 report, “is instructive because it shows that violence against Christians is widespread across the whole of Pakistan, from Muree in the North to Karachi in the South and from Lahore in the East to Peshawar in the West. It shows that violence is rural and urban, including in the capital; and that it involves ad hoc apparently spontaneous acts of violence, as well as organised violence and violence in which government authorities, local and national, collude either directly or by omission.
It evidences a complex and multi-dimensional pattern of persecution, intimidation and lack of protection”. It is also Malik’s contention that “especially since the US-led campaign in Afghanistan, there has been a rise in attacks on Christian churches, schools and hospitals. These are often attributed to groups like Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), including the attacks on the Christian school in Murree and the chapel in Taxila Hospital in early August 2002”.cxxxii Even as extremist militant groups such as the Anjuman-i-Sipah-i-Sahaba (ASSP) and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) have openly decried ‘Othered’ Muslim minority Shi’as and considered them as “apostates” and “less patriotic” and “as linked to Iranian forces”, they have “supported the Taliban” and have also begun “a new wave of terror against Pakistani Christians” since “late October 2001. While previously the attacks were isolated incidents, since Pakistan joined the anti-Taliban coalition” in the ‘War on Terror’, “the targeting of Christians has increased”
Have you read our book?
The Targeting of ‘Minority Others’ in Pakistan?
The Targeting of ‘Minority Others’ in Pakistan is a thought provoking and path-breaking book that has been published by the British Pakistani Christian Association. It examines the shocking nature of targeting and discriminatory actions against religious, ethnic and political ‘minority Others’ in Pakistan.