Christian women in Pakistan continue to suffer a unique form of “double persecution.” Being both the wrong religion and the wrong gender, Christian women are not treated equally and are often subjected to the most brutal forms of persecution faced by the Christian community in Pakistan. In early August, a 12-year-old Christian girl was abducted and raped by two Muslim men. A complaint has been filed against the rapists and one has been arrested and the other is out on bail. The Christian family is already facing intimidation and threats because of their willingness to bring a case against the Muslim attackers. Please pray for this suffering Christian family.
8/22/2014 Pakistan (Agenzia Fides) – Indignation and outrage in the Christian community of Lahore after the rape of a 12-year-old Christian girl. Muqadas, is the daughter of the Christian Liaqat Masih who has four daughters. As Fides learns Muqadas comes from a poor family and all four girls work as maids in the homes of middle class Muslims.
The violence took place on August 2. Muqadas and her older sister Asma were returning home from work, when Muqadas was kidnapped by two Muslim men and three women. They took her inside a school (which was closed) and the two men, identified as Ashraf Alias Achi and Ghaffor Alias Paida raped her repeatedly in turn.
The girl was later abandoned. The family went to the police in Lahore and filed a complaint. One of the rapists was arrested and the other has asked for bail. Liaqat Masih’s family is in a state of shock and is assisted by the NGO LEAD, led by the Christian lawyer Sardar Mushtaq Gill, who said to Fides: “We will do everything so that this violence does not go unpunished”. The family has already received intimidation to withdraw the complaint.
“In Pakistan” – Gill explains to Fides – “rape is used as an instrument of arbitrary power over Christian girls, who come from poor and marginalized families. It is a form of violence that wants to reiterate the submission to Muslims. The rest of society is not outraged because the victims mostly belong to religious minorities, who are the most vulnerable. Rarely rapists are punished.”