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Christian family attacked by Muslims in Pakistan

by Staff
January 25, 2010
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( - A Muslim mob brutally attacked a Christian man, who suffers from schizophrenia, and his family on December 28 in Islamabad, Pakistan. Shumail Aleem (32) was accused of blasphemy when he commented to another Christian at a nearby general store that movie channels weren't being shown on the shop's television because Muslims were observing Yom-e-Ashura.

On Yom-e-Ashura, Shiite Muslims mourn the death of Muhammad's grandson while Sunni Muslims believe Moses fasted on that day to express gratitude to God for freeing the Israelites from Egypt. Even though Shumail's comment apparently supported the shopkeeper's reasoning to not show a film that day, the shopkeeper, Naveed, began to beat Shumail and demanded to know why he had profaned Muhammad's grandson's name.

Later that day, when the family returned home, they found some of their possessions thrown around the house. They were told by a neighbour that approximately two dozen men and some police had come searching for Shumail because Naveed had accused him of blasphemy. When Shumail's father, Mansoor, later tried to bring his son to the police station to clear up the allegations, they were attacked by more than a dozen Muslims.

More than a hundred enraged Muslims eventually gathered at the scene. Shumail's sister, Elishba (20), tried to defend them and was struck on the head with an iron rod. After she fell unconscious, the assailants continued to beat her and broke one of her legs.

The Muslims also injured Mansoor's wife, sister-in-law, and another of his sons, Shazir. Shazir's wife was also beaten and her infant daughter was snatched out of her arms and thrown on the ground. The infant was not seriously injured. Elishba received medical treatment and eventually regained consciousness, but was struggling with intense pain at last report.

Members of the mob reportedly paid off medical staff to withhold Elishba's medical information and bribed officers to pressure the family to drop the case in exchange for an out-of-court settlement. (Source: Compass Direct)

Pray for healing for those injured in this attack. Pray that authorities will act justly and with integrity in this case. Ask God to protect this family and other Christians in their community.

To find out more about the persecution Christians face in Pakistan, please visit

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