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ICC Note:

As 88 Christians face charges for their involvement in riots that took place after two churches were bombed in the Christian majority neighborhood of Youhanabad, leaders from the Christian community has asked for forgiveness. Following the bombing of the two Pakistani churches, Christians took to the street in protest. The protest turned deadly when rioters attacked to Muslims suspected to be in league with the bombers. Now, 88 Christians will be tried for their involvement in the riots in an anti-terror court in Lahore. 

10/21/2015 Pakistan (Vatican Radio) – Catholic and Protestant religious leaders in Pakistan have asked pardon for the killing of two innocent Muslims suspected of being accomplices of suicide bombers who blew themselves near two Christian churches in Lahore last March. The two suspects were lynched by an angry Christian mob and their bodies set on fire.

Seventeen people, including seven Muslims, were killed and more than 70 wounded in the terror attacks in the largely Christian neighborhood of Yohannabad. The two innocent men were identified as a local glasscutter and a hosiery worker from Sargodha.

“We ask forgiveness for the reaction of the Christian community,” Fr Emmanuel Yousaf Mani, director of the National Commission for Justice and Peace (NCJP) of the Catholic Church of Pakistan said on March 18. ‎”We can now only ask for forgiveness,” said Rev Irshad Ashknaz, vicar at Christ Church that was attacked.

They were speaking on a talk show held at St John Catholic Church, whose entrance was damaged in the terrorist attack.  Some 200 Christians along with Archbishop Sebastian Shaw of Lahore, two Catholic priests, two Protestant clergymen, two Islamic students and police officers attended the event.

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