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ICC Note:

Recently, a Christian school boy was beaten to death by his Muslim classmates in Pakistan due to his religious identity. The news of this event has sent a shock wave across Pakistan with many demanding justice for the slain Christian student. Today, the murder and circumstances leading up to it were discussed in Pakistan’s National Assembly with many leaders from different parties denouncing the violence. Hopefully this will be a watershed moment for Pakistan in which the country finally takes on the issue of hate material being taught in its public schools. 

09/12/2017 Pakistan (Christians in Pakistan) – The lynching of a Christian schoolboy was brought under discussion in National Assembly session today, September 12. MNA Khaleel George, who himself hails from the Christian community, introduced the matter to the Assembly. He complained about lack of freedom for the religious minorities in the country.

Detailing the matter, MNA Khaleel George told the Assembly that, “Sheron Masih lost his life because he drank water in the same glass as the other boys.” He criticized at the curriculum being taught in the schools. “Our school curricula need to be revised to reflect interfaith harmony. The minorities of this country feel alone at the moment.”

MNA Shazia Marri from Pakistan People’s Party expressed sorrow over the tragic loss of Sharoon Masih saying, “Mashal Khan also lost his life as a result of intolerance within an educational institution.” She criticized the religious intolerance being engraved upon the mindsets saying, “This mindset is fast becoming prevalent in our institutions and society, while the state has shut its eyes.”

She questioned the inaction of government regarding National Action Plan saying, “No liberal feels safe in Pakistan. The question is ‘why is the National Action Plan not being implemented?’”

Denouncing the violence, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s Asad Umar slammed the religious intolerance and said, “It is our responsibility to take care of this nation’s minorities.” He lashed at the mindsets of religious intolerance saying, “The real danger is this mindset that promotes violence in the society.”

At the same time, the lawmaker demanding stern action against forces that fan the flames of religious intolerance and violence against religious minorities. “The ones maligning the name of religion and Pakistan by falsely calling this Islam need to be brought to justice.”

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