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ICC Note:

The Pakistani government and military have warned the Christian community of the potential of an upcoming anti-Christian terror campaign planned by Islamic terrorist groups. According to the warning, Christian leaders have been told not to venture far from their churches or take meeting with individuals they do not know. Also, the military warned that churches, Christian schools, and Christian hospitals were likely targets. Although concerning, the warning from the Pakistani government and military represents a positive development in the protection of Pakistan’s Christian minority. 

9/22/2015 Pakistan (Gatestone Institute) – The Pakistani government and military have warned the nation’s tiny Christian minority that Islamic terrorist groups plan to target Christian religious institutions in the near future. The wave of anti-Christian attacks will allegedly include Pakistan’s Christian churches, schools, and hospitals.

The warning issued by Pakistan’s leading generals represents an extraordinary, positive development in the military’s relationship with minorities in general and with Christians in particular. Their warming relationship appears to be a calculated political move to complement the military leadership’s ongoing offensive against the terrorist havens in the northwestern corner of the country.

Emissaries of the most powerful Pakistani generals and the Ministry of Interior have apparently personally warned Christian clerics that the assault will first be launched in the country’s northwest region of Khyber Paktunkhwa.[1] This region abuts the Pushtun-dominated provinces of Afghanistan where Pakistan’s Tehrik-e-Taliban is a potent force.

According to the warnings, the planned attacks against Christian communities in Pakistan will be carried out by some splinter groups that formerly belonged to the Pakistani Taliban. According to sources in the area, these splinter groups have already forged an alliance with the more extremist and brutal Islamic State (ISIS) cells that have already entered Pakistan.

The former Pakistani Taliban Commander, Hafiz Saeed Khan, is said to have pledged an oath of allegiance in January to Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.[2] Several other Pakistani Taliban groups have reportedly also agreed to join up.

In addition, Ahmed Marwat, a.k.a. Farhad Marwat, commander of Pakistan’s Jundallah terrorist organization, specifically threatened in June that “the Jundallah will attack kafir Shi’ites, Ismailis and Christians.”

Marwat met with Islamic State representatives in November 2014. Later the same month, he took responsibility for attacking aid workers in Quetta, Pakistan, and labeled the volunteers “Yahood o Nasara”: “Jews and Christians.” The Jundallah group, reputedly the Islamic State’s most potent ally in Pakistan, claimed responsibility for the twin-suicide bombings against All Saints Church in Peshawar on September 22, 2013. It also probably intends to initiate more anti-Christian atrocities.

One Christian cleric explained that the anti-Christian strategy by Islamic terrorists might be a bitter response to the effectiveness of the Pakistani Army’s ongoing offensive — a campaign that targeted Islamist jihadists in their hideouts in the northwest.

Another Christian cleric complimented Pakistan’s military leaders for the ongoing drive to subdue the Pakistani Taliban and several smaller jihadi groups in the far northwest, especially in North Waziristan.

The Pakistani generals most responsible for the planning and execution of this anti-terrorist offensive include Army Chief of Staff General Raheel Sharif; Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) chief General Rizwan Akhtar, and the commander of Pakistan’s Army Rangers, General Bilal Akbar. Sources claim that these three generals have forged an aggressive battle plan with which to roll back extremist Muslim jihadists threatening Islamabad’s sovereign control over the country.

This triad has apparently also purged the Pakistani Army officer corps of anyone suspected of sympathizing with Islamic terrorist factions.

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