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ICC Note:

Last month, Arif Masih and his sister, Jameela, were kidnapped from their house and tortured by Muslims attempting to get them to convert to Islam. After resisting torture, Arif was able to escape the ordeal, but Jameela remains missing. Kidnappings and forced conversions remains a major issues faced by Christians in Pakistan. It is estimated by the Movement of Solidarity and Peace Pakistan that as many as 700 Christian women and girls are kidnapped and forced to convert to Islam every year. Will the world finally take notice of this really terrible issue and demand Pakistan change?

10/04/2016 Pakistan (Christians in Pakistan) – On 15th September 2016, at 11:30 p.m., near the village of Samanyala near Kasur, Fiaz Masih and his family were awakened from their slumber by the noise of a group of people entering their home. Their home is muds house with no door to the main veranda just a piece of cloth to avert prying eyes, so forced entry is a task of no great difficulty.

Fiaz Masih (54 years) and his wife Mumtaz (50 years) have 6 daughters and 2 sons. Their children include; Waris ( 31 years) Kalsoom (27 years) Syma (24 years) Shakeela (22 years) Beena (21 years), Arif (20 years) Jameela (17 years) Rukhsana (14 years).

Six men and a woman known locally by the family who were armed with guns, sticks and metal poles began to beat the family asking them to convert to Islam or die. Despite the pain and threats to their lives the family stayed resolute to their Christian faith and refused to convert. This incensed the Muslim attackers even more. All the family members were tied up and blindfolded and two of them, 20-year-old Arif and 17-year-old Jameela, were kidnapped and dragged into a van outside. The two of them were taken to an unknown building and tortured but Arif refused to convert to Islam.

He could hear her screaming and was told by his captors that they were taking turns raping his sister and that all he had to do to save her was to convert to Islam, but still he refused though in great anguish for her. The next morning the captors left a door open and Arif was able to escape when his blindfold slipped and he noticed no-one watching him. He loosened the ropes around his wrists and walked out of a place he describes as a big mansion.

Hiding in the shadows he crept out of the palatial home and ran without looking back. Telling the story of his kidnap he was able to several short lifts in rickshaws and walked for several hours to get back home. He could no longer hear his sister’s screaming when he left and believes she had been removed to another place. He never looked back when he ran from the property where he had been imprisoned and did not ask anyone the location as the building was a far way removed from other homes. Arif sadly cannot recall the location of the mansion.

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