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03/31/2021 Pakistan (International Christian Concern) – According to Asia News, the government of Pakistan is tightening rules on social distancing and plans to increase restrictions as COVID-19 cases increase. This third wave of the pandemic in Pakistan will affect the ability of Christians to gather for various Holy Week events and the Easter holiday.

We missed Easter and Christmas last year and were unable to receive communion,” Kashif Anthony of Karachi told Asia News. “We thought we would have Easter this year, but the government is very concerned about the third wave of COVID-19. It is said to be more dangerous than the previous two waves.

In reaction to the climbing number of COVID-19 cases, the Pakistani Government is tightening social distancing and other restrictions intended to combat the spread of the pandemic. These restrictions have come at a time when Christians were preparing to participate in Holy Week events and celebrate the Easter holiday.

In previous years, acts of terror and persecution have affected the ability of Pakistani Christians to gather for the Easter holiday. In 2015, suicide bombers attacked two churches in the Youhanabad neighborhood of Lahore in the weeks leading up to Easter. In 2016, suicide bombers again targeted Christians celebrating Easter in a public park in Lahore.

In both cases, Easter celebrations were held under tight security for fear of further attack from extremists in Pakistan.

For interviews, please contact Alison Garcia: press@persecution.org.