At least two Christians have been killed and multiple churches have been attacked in Pakistan, reportedly in response to a Koran-burning ceremony in Florida last week, says Asia News.
According to the outlet, two Christians were killed last Friday when Islamic extremists attacked a Pentecostal church in Hyderabad. The group originally showed up to burn the church, but were unsuccessful. Instead, they confiscated copies of the Bible and burned them.
In a similar attack, a mob reportedly attacked the Full Gospel Assembly Church, in the Badami Bagh area of Lahore. There, Asia News says, the attackers “threw copies of the Bible into the street and accused the Christians of blasphemy, claiming they found pieces of the Koran, not far from the church.”
And in yet a third incident, this one on Monday, a group of seven armed men attacked the Catholic Church of St. Thomas in the military district of Wah. Asia News reports:
The attack took place at 6.30 pm yesterday, while the security guard was absent. The extremists hurled stones, damaged the building and tried to set fire to it, but they did not shoot. Yesterday’s was the third attack against a church in Pakistan less than a week. […]
The extremists were armed, but did not open fire. Unable to break down the door, they tried to set it on fire. The parish priest, Fr Yousaf, rushed to the scene of the attack and tried to reassure the small Christian community. “It’s a reaction – the priest told AsiaNews – to the desecration of the Koran in Florida, although the Catholic community has condemned the act. We pointed out clearly that we have no link with the Americans. At the time of the attack there were no guards, the police are present only on Sundays. ”
Pastor Tariq Emmanuel, who lives near the church, added that the assailants did not open fire “because it is a high security area” and the military would have reacted immediately in the event of gunfire.
As noted, the attacks are in response to last week’s burning of a Koran oversaw by Florida Pastor Terry Jones. NPR explains:
But, yesterday, during Dove World Outreach Center’s Sunday service, without any publicity and under the supervision of Jones, Pastor Wayne Sapp soaked a Quran in kerosene for an hour, held an event he said was a “trial” for the Muslim holy book, and after the book was found guilty, Sapp set the Quran on fire using a barbecue lighter.
According to Asia News, the pastors of the attacked churches in Pakistan have denounced Jones and his actions.
“What fault did those two innocent people have,” one of them said, “who were not Americans, but only Pakistani Christians?” http://www.theblaze.com/stories/pakistani-christians-reportedly-killed-churches-attacked-in-response-to-koran-burning/