Pakistan's only Christian minister assassinated over blasphemy row
Pakistan's only Christian minister Shahbaz Bhatti was shot dead today after pushing for the reform of harsh blasphemy laws that impose the death penalty for insulting Islam.
The assisination comes just a fortnight after Mr Bhatti, Minister for Minorities, said he was prepared to die for his beliefs following a series of death threats.
He claimed his faith gave him strength during a recent visit to Canada.
The member of Muslim-majority Pakistan's Christian community, was on his way to work in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, when unknown gunmen riddled his car with bullets, police officer Mohmmad Iqbal said.
He was taken to Shifa Hospital with his driver who was also badly wounded.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but private Pakistani TV channels showed pamphlets at the scene of the killing that were attributed to the Pakistani Taliban warning of the same fate for anyone opposing the blasphemy laws.
Earlier this year, Punjab province Gov. Salman Taseer was killed by a bodyguard who said he was angry that the politician opposed the blasphemy laws.
The Taseer killing terrified those in Pakistan who are secular-minded or liberal, but it also drew wide praise among many ordinary Pakistani. Analysts said the reaction was a sign of the growing radicalization of the Muslim public.
Mr Bhatti had been campaigning to reform the Pakistan's notoriously strict blasphemy laws, which most recently were used against Asia Bibi, the Christian woman sentenced to death for “insulting” Islam.
Mrs Bibi says the allegation was invented by a neighbour to settle a score, a common complaint about the blasphemy law, and she is now in hiding. Although no one has ever been executed under Pakistan’s blasphemy laws, as many as 10 people are thought to have been murdered while on trial.
In February Mr Bhatti said death threats would not stop him speaking out against the country’s blasphemy law.
He said during a trip to Canada: “I have been told by pro-Taliban religious extremists that if I will continue to speak against the blasphemy law, I will be beheaded.” But he said his faith gave him strength.
“As a Christian, I believe Jesus is my strength. He has given me a power and wisdom and motivation to serve suffering humanity. I follow the principles of my conscience, and I am ready to die and sacrifice my life for the principles I believe,” he said.
What else could possibly go wrong?ReplyDelete
Unfortunately everything. Events are outracing the ability of the political machinery in the World to keep up.
We are in an age where the time required to reason has been technologically compressed out of the system.
It looks uglier and uglier and we look less and less capable of comprehending events let alone influencing or shaping them.
I hope to never meet another Paki.ReplyDelete
The more I learn about the Stans, the less I want to know of them.
To use the souther vernacular, England is "eat up" with Pakis.ReplyDelete
This 'caint' be good.
That whole area of the whirled, (Afghani, Paki, Chechenya) should be cut off and isolated.ReplyDelete
I'm pretty sure this area provided the location and the extras for an Indiana Jones movie.
What a brave man! Such a noble testimony. He surely saw it coming and was steadfast. Such an inspiration to all who profess the Christian faith. May he be in the Kingdom.ReplyDelete
These sublime Catholic martyrs are specifically instructed NOT to preach in Algeria, Somalia and other places where they have been murdered. There only witness is the beauty of their souls as revealed in their loving actions as nurses and such. In Pakistan, for instance, evangelicals secretly convert Muslims but the Catholic church carefully follows the Islamic Sharia law and tries to ‘cooperate’ with them to be allowed to ‘exist’, distancing themselves from non-Catholics who tell Muslims the truth. Over one and a half billion Muslims consciously kept in ignorance of the message of Jesus Christ by the collusion of the Catholic Church with ‘Islamic Sensitivities’.ReplyDelete
In 628 AD, a delegation from St. Catherine’s Monastery in Sinai, came to Prophet Muhammed [peace be upon him] and requested his protection. Prophet Muhammad [peace be upon him] responded by granting them a charter of rights, which is reproduce in its entirety. [http://peace-forum.blogspot.com/2011/02/prophet-muhammads-everlasting-promise.html]. This is ever lasting charter, granting unprecedented protection, tolerance and freedom to Christians living among Muslims.ReplyDelete
The Muslims respect the precedent of their Prophet [peace be upon him], violation of the written charter/commandment of Prophet Muhammad [peace be upon him] is blasphemy...
Mr.Shahbaz Bhatti, the minister for Minorities have been gun down by the extremists Taliban, who are killing Muslims worshiping in mosques. They spare no one, any one who disagree with their view, they feel free to kill. They follow their own desires. The Muslims of Pakistan and all over the world condemn this heinous crime as they condemn killing of innocent human being any where in the world, strictly forbidden by Qur'an:
"Therefore We ordained for the Children of Israel that he who slays a soul unless it be (in punishment) for murder or for spreading mischief on earth shall be as if he had slain all mankind; and he who saves a life shall be as if he had given life to all mankind. And indeed again and again did Our Messengers come to them with clear directives; yet many of them continued to commit excesses on earth."(Qur'an;5:32)
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It happens only in pakistan!!!ReplyDelete