In Pakistan being Christian is a crime. If they raise voice for their rights or someone speak in their favor, their corpses will be on the road. I ask Prime Minister of Pakistan Mr. Nawaz Sharif, what will you say about Minorities in United Nations General Assembly? Are minorities living according to the charter of UN in Pakistan? That is why whoever gets a chance is fleeing from Pakistan especially Christians.
Despite centuries of persecution, violence rarely has the last word.
Weeks before its first horrendous beheading of an American journalist, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria gave Christians in Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, a stark one week choice: Convert or face execution. Christian houses were marked with a black “N” — for Nazarene, a reference to Jesus.
Those who fled were, as a refugee named Raad Ghanem put it, “stripped of everything. Money, wallets, jewelry, ID, passports, watches, everything.” For the first time in 16 centuries, there are no Catholic masses in Mosul on worship day.
This persecution has reached well beyond Mosul. As recently as 2003, roughly 1.4 million Christians lived in Iraq. After more than 60 church bombings and ISIL’s recent campaign to exterminate religious minorities, the numbers have dwindled. Syrian Christians are under equally serious assault, as are Coptic Christians in Egypt.
But history offers a glimmer of hope in the midst of this darkness. It is not just that refugees from persecution often find a home in new countries where their beliefs can flourish, as Catholics and Jews did in 19th century America, and Protestants did before that. The more profound truth is that violence rarely has the final word, even in the country from which a religious minority has been excluded.
The Roman Empire sought to snuff out Christianity on several occasions, most famously during the reign of Nero.
Even when they were not actively persecuted, Christians often were forbidden from owning property and subjected to social stigma. Yet Christianity survived and eventually thrived. Ironically, Christianity’s own commitment to human rights — such as the dignity of women — was a key feature of its success.
According to sociologist Rodney Stark, Roman Emperor Valentinian was so worried about Christianity’s attractiveness to women that he issued an order in A.D. 370forbidding Christian missionaries from making visits to the houses of pagan women.
In the modern era, China clamped down on Christians during the infamous Cultural Revolution. The Chinese leadership was ruthlessly efficient, and for years few known Christians could be found in China. Yet as soon as cracks opened in the oppression, Christianity began to spread. Two of the 21 best known leaders of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests are now ordained priests, and the number of Chinese Christians is now thought to be roughly 60 million.
Beliefs that no longer seem to make sense of the world may fade. This is why we don’t worship Baal, as the ancient Phoenicians did, or offer libation to Greek gods and goddesses. But any religion or system of thought that speaks to our deepest needs cannot be kept at bay forever, no matter how virulent the oppression. It will always spring back as soon as it is given an opening.
Christians are not perfect. Christians have sometimes been responsible for repression themselves, as in the Crusades and the Inquisition in the Middle Ages. But so long as Christianity continues to enable men and women to navigate the complexity of their lives, it will withstand even the most awful oppression.
The resilience of Christian beliefs obviously should not be an excuse for complacency as ISIL continues its rampage. Millions of Iraqis and Syrians live in constant fear. ISIL’s disdain for human rights cries out for a response. The U.S. and other countries need to do whatever they can to help restore order in this time of chaos.
But we can take comfort knowing that repression in Mosul and elsewhere will not be the end of the story. Although something precious is lost if an ancient tradition is severed, even temporarily, Christianity will one day return to Iraq. It always does.
David Skeel, a law professor at the University of Pennsylvania, is author of True Paradox: How Christianity Makes Sense of Our Complex World.
Mr. Hector Aleem Chairman Peace Worldwide was in jail due to a false blasphemy case and while he was suffering in prison some people and Pakistani organizations tried to defame him without any kind of evidence. When Hector Aleem was arrested, at the very beginning of the trial in January 2009, they started a propaganda that the charges of blasphemy are dropped but the truth is nothing like that ever happened. Blasphemy charges were only dropped in the final decision of the case. To support Muslim Fundamentalists and extremists, the Government of Punjab filed an appeal against the decision of Hector Aleem’s acquittal on government expenses, because they were against his work of human rights, religious freedom and rebuilding of Church. We remind you that no organization hired any lawyer for Mr. Hector Aleem. The only lawyer who was defending his case was Mr. Mir Muhammad Ghufran Khurshid Imtiazi Advocate Supreme Court of Pakistan. This lawyer was hired by his own family. This appeal is under process in Lahore High Court Rawalpindi Bench which means the blasphemy charges are still not dropped.
The decision given by the session judge of the trial court and the appeal against this decision are attached for your information.
This is the Decision:
This is the Appeal:
Before the arrival of Islam in the subcontinent, nations living there like Christians, Buddhists and Hindus were living peacefully, then came the robbers and thugs like Mohammad Bin Qasim, Mehmood Ghaznavi and others from Afghanistan and Middle East, who disturbed those peaceful people and demolished and ruined their worship places. Pakistani Muslims of today still read those awful deeds of their ancestors with fun and tell these stories to children proudly and now have named their nuclear missiles on the names of these terrorists and thugs. Then came the British, who ruled this region for many years, Muslims of that time raised their voice for two nation theory and describing it as that they have different dresses and different religion from Hindus. But the Christians of this region have been facing discrimination since the arrival of Muslims in this continent because the real enemy of Christians are Muslims not Hindus since the arrival of Islam. Their history is full of killing Christians and Jews when Islam spreaded. When Muslims arrived in subcontinent, they followed the same path of their ancestors and targeted Christians of the region. Muslims are targeting Christians all over the world whether they are in a Muslim country or a non-Muslim country. Where Islam is dominant (as in the Middle East and Pakistan) religious minorities suffer brutal persecution with little resistance. Where Islam is in the minority (as in Thailand, the Philippines and Europe) there is the threat of violence if Muslim demands are not met. Either situation seems to provide a justification for religious terrorism, which is persistent and endemic to Islamic fundamentalism.
Pakistani Christians are very peaceful nation and they waited for 67 years for their right of free speech and freedom to practice their religion but they are never allowed to do so in Pakistan. Two Nation theory applies here because Christians have everything different with Muslims. Christians, Jews and Muslims are called Abrahamic religions but Muslims created the difference by calling God, Allah and it is forbidden for many non-Muslims in Muslims countries to call Allah as their God. This is the biggest difference they have created. Muslims only had differences of dress and religion with the Hindus but Christians have difference of religion, culture, language, customs, dresses and everything with the Muslims. According to our Christian faith, Jesus Christ is the son of God, Christianity is based on it, and we believe that God gave all His powers to Jesus Christ, this is our faith and after Jesus Christ no prophet is required. We have been hearing that Islam spread through sword, and it is still happening in Pakistan, I have witnessed what they do to Christians of Pakistan, Christians are forcibly made to accept the Muslim Prophet as their last prophet, they are forced to renounce their religion and faith and practice the Christianity according to Islam. We are forced to accept Prophet Mohammad as our last prophet and our Christian girls are forced to cover their heads during the recitation of Quranic verses and Azan in every part of Pakistan. During these 67 years, Christians of Pakistan have faced the worst examples of discrimination. It is now time that Christians should rise against this discrimination because it is unbearable when we see our Christian girls and women being raped and kidnapped and when the judge gives the decision in favour of the rapist and kidnappers by keeping discrimination and prejudice in his mind. In blasphemy cases, one can experience the worst example of discrimination and torture in prison during this case. I, myself have been the victim of this discriminatory law and experienced and eye witnessed worst form of torture that is impossible for me to explain. The First Information Report (FIR) of a blasphemy case can be lodged on oral statement and no official investigate the case before lodging the FIR. It is required that the plaintiff should be a Muslim and the officials trust him blindly, the accused is than brought in front of the plaintiff and clerics by the police officers and they torture him in front of his plaintiffs and others. The lawyers boycott the accused and no one takes his/her case and leaves the accused alone. It is essential that the judge who is dealing the blasphemy case should be a Muslim and when the accused is produced before the court, the first question of the judge is “Why did you do it” no one asks him if he really does it? In the result, the victim losses his family, house, relatives, respect and friends and during or before the trail he gets killed by the police or inmates. Same is in the education system; the teachers are discriminative towards the Christian students. From the very first day of school, Christian child starts to hear that Christianity is a false religion and that they should accept Islam if they want to go to Heaven. Christians never get any key post in police and district management.
Now let’s talk about Politicians of Pakistan, we all know about Fazal ur Rehman who recruited many Talibans. Chairman of Council of Islamic Ideology (Islami Nazriati Council) is Maulana Sharani of JUI (F) (Jamiat Ullema Islam – Fazal ur Rehman), the same maulana who criticised a Christian MNA (Member of National Assembly) Tariq.C.Qaiser, who recited “in the name Our Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit” in National Assembly though Tariq C Qaiser was reciting it as his own faith. After that they tormented and harassed him that much that he had to flee the country. Politicians like Imran Khan and Maulana Fazal Ur Rehman talks against Christianity bravely and proudly without any hesitation and give statements in favour of Talibans. When any terrorist attack or a blast occurs in Christian enclaves or Church we hear only one statement from President to MNAs (Member of National Assembly) that no Muslim can do this it is an act of enemies of Islam. Same is with print and electronic media of Pakistan; they keep disgracing Christianity and spread false news and hateful material about Christianity.
In the end I would like to say that Christians have not arrived in this region from USA or Europe they are the indigenous people of this region, but Muslims of Pakistan proudly tells about their ancestors as Sherazi from Sheraz, Bukhari from Bukhara, Qureshi from the Quresh tribe of Arab and etc. We the Christians of Pakistan are keeping our eyes on the international community and organisations like United Nations and Commonwealth to promote us because no one is helping us. Real Two Nation theory applies here in Pakistan, we want our separate homeland where we will be able to preach and practice our religion freely and openly. My article should not be made as a base of a separate homeland for Muslims living in USA or Europe because they have in migrated here from Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan and other Muslim countries but we are the indigenous people of subcontinent and we have the right to demand for our own homeland but Muslims of USA and Europe doesn’t. Also Muslims in Europe and USA are enjoying freedom and equal rights but on the other hand Christians of Pakistan are suffering torture, discrimination and extinction. It is our right for a separate Christian homeland in Pakistan.
This article is published by Peace Worldwide