Friday, January 21, 2011

Pakistan: EU's vice-chair for foreign affairs condemns escalation of religious hostility towards Christian minority

STRASBOURG, France, January 20, 2011 -- "The EU Parliament's vice-chair for foreign affairs, Fiorello Provera, has condemned the escalation of religious hostility towards Pakistan's Christian minority in the wake of the sentencing to death of Asia Bibi on blasphemy charges, and the recent killing of Punjab's governor Salman Taseer.

Christians make up approximately 2% of Pakistan's population, but in recent years many have been victims of intimidation and harassment as churches have been attacked, and in 2009, six Christians were burned alive after Muslim extremists attacked their homes in the Punjabi village of Gojra.

Since the death of governor Taseer, many Christians have reported feeling isolated and vulnerable to fresh attacks. This is a sad situation given the country's founder Muhammed Ali Jinnah encouraged religious freedom and tolerance ".

Source: Office of MEP Fiorello Provera