Den kristne landsbyen Korian ble totalt ødelagt en muslimsk mobb torsdag. Mobben var hisset opp av rykter om at det var funnet sider fra Koranen utenfor et hus i landsbyen. En familie er anklaget for blasfemi og risikerer dødsstraff.
Norske myndigheter er totalt tause om den forfølgelse som kristne utsettes for i muslimske land, enten det er Egypt eller Pakistan. Mye av behandlingen minner om det jøder ble utsatt for opp gjennom historien: flere – blant dem myndighetene – har behov for å kanalisere frustrasjon og aggresjon mot en syndebukk, og de kristne er ute av stand til å forsvare seg. At man har gjort religionen mer fanatisk, er et farlig våpen, som har slått tilbake på hele samfunnet, men det lukker man øynene for.
Smoke was still rising from the Christian village of Korian in Punjab province on July 31 after it was completely destroyed in a violent raid the previous night by thousands of Muslims.
Korian was home to about 100 Christian families, most of them laborers, who all fled the area in the wake of the attack. No one died in the incident.
The village in Faisalabad diocese was attacked after Muslims accused a family there of blasphemy. In all, 60 houses and two churches belonging to the Church of Pakistan and the New Apostolic Church were destroyed and livestock stolen.
«They have left nothing. My horse, my only source of income, has also been taken,» said Shubaan Masih, a local Christian.
The mob also blockaded the road leading to the village for several hours refusing entry to police or firefighters.
Masih said the mob was armed with firearms and explosives. «They used trucks to break the walls and petrol to start the fires,» he said. «We saved our lives only by hiding in the fields until three in the morning, when relatives arrived with vehicles to collect us. The children cried all night,» Masih said.
Tension between the Christian and Muslim communities in the area arose after pages containing Islamic inscriptions were found in front of a Christian home on July 26 following a wedding.
A group of Muslims then interrogated those who attended the wedding party, and accused the family of desecrating the Qur’an. The family says it has no knowledge of the offence but nevertheless apologized on July 30, saying that children who did not know what they were doing could have been responsible.
Muslims from surrounding villages gathered that evening at the local mosques before the mood turned ugly, Atif Jamil Pagaan, spokesperson of a Christian NGO told UCA News.
Local Muslims have filed charges against the family according to the country’s blasphemy laws. They are accusing the family of blasphemy against Prophet Muhammad, which carries a mandatory death sentence in Pakistan. They also accuse the family of blasphemy against the Qur’an, which is punishable with life imprisonment.
Christian politicians and Catholic priests have condemned the incident and demanded investigations of the assault. A group of seven Catholic priests went to visit the site.
«One cannot but weep upon seeing the trail of destruction left behind,» said Father Aftab James Paul, director of Faisalabad diocese’s Commission for Interfaith Dialogue.
«It is yet another example of a feud being given a religious color. We shall visit the police station and demand the arrest of the instigators of this terrorism,» he said.
According to media reports, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif also strongly condemned the incident and expressed his sorrow over the destruction of homes and loss of livestock.
Reports said that Sharif has directed authorities to secure the area and control the situation.
Det ville være fjernt fra demokratiske idealer å holde pakistanere i Norge/Europa ansvarlig for det som deres landsmenn gjør. Men når både norske myndigheter og pakistansk-ættede er fullstendig tause oppstår en kompromitterende politiske fortielse: det man ikke taler om korrumperer. I en globalisert verden er dette en fullstendig uholdbar ubalanse: man er opptatt av pakistanernes rettigheter i Norge, men sier ikke et kny om forfølgelsen av kristne i muslimske land. Denne svakhet blir selvsagt lagt merke til, og jo lenger man venter med å korrigere kursen, jo vanskeligere blir det.
På et eller annet punkt kan det også tenkes at befolkningen i Europa blir oppmerksom på denne ubalansen. Da vil unnlatelsene og forskjellsbehandlingen virke polariserende i Europa.