12/11/2019 Pakistan (International Christian Concern) – On December 5, four policemen dressed in civilian clothes violently raided a Christian wedding ceremony in Gojra, located in Pakistan’s Punjab province. According to the victims, the police beat several of the Christians attending the wedding, used abusive language, and vandalized the home where the ceremony was taking place.
According to witnesses, the wedding of Sajid Masih was in progress when the policemen attack. In a video uploaded to Facebook, one of the victims claimed that the police used abusive language, calling the Christian women “Kanjries”, prostitutes, and “Choori”, a derogatory word used to describe Christians as unclean and untouchable.
“Those injured were refused medical treatment at the nearest hospital, as per the police directives to the medical staff,” Bishop John Samuel of Faisalabad explained. In the midst of the attack, a Christian youth was severely beaten by police when he confronted a policeman who had torn his sister’s dress and dragged her into the street.
Local Christians have staged a protest against the police administration and have demanded legal action be taken against the officers involved in the attack. The protestors have also demanded greater security for the Christian community living in the locality.
“A case registered against the Christians should be quashed,” Bishop Samuel demanded while talking to the media. “An FIR must be registered against those so-called policemen who attacked, abused women, and damaged households. The community will be forced to use other peaceful means to bring the truth to the surface.”
Christians in Pakistan face widespread discrimination and intolerance because of their faith identity. This discrimination can often explode into outright instances of persecution. Unfortunately, this discrimination also effects Pakistan’s law enforcement and is often the root cause of police abuse against the Christian community.
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