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Pakistani Muslims Form Human Chain to Protect Christians During Mass – Again

Vicki Francis/Department for International Development

Brantly Millegan - published on 10/10/13

In the wake of a deadly attack on a Christian church in Pakistan, hundreds of Pakistani Muslims formed a human chain around a major church in a symbolic gesture of solidarity.

Several hundred Muslims gathered and formed a human chain outside St Anthony’s Church in the city of Lahore, the capital city of the Pakistan’s Punjab province. The gesture of solidarity comes two weeks after 78 people were killed and over 100 injured in an attack on a Christian church in Peshawar, Pakistan.

The Muslim Mufti Mohammad Farooq quoted from the Koran and preached to the crowd on the importance of tolerance and then joined the human chain next to Father Nasir Gulfam who had just finished a two-hour long Sunday Mass.

The organizer of the event, Mohammad Jibran Nasir, told the Express Tribune, “Well the terrorists showed us what they do on Sundays. Here we are showing them what we do on Sundays. We unite.” He also expressed a hope that politicians would eventually get involved. “I see no reason why our politicians and our leaders should not come out of their houses, leave the luxury of their secure homes and stand in solidarity with the common man.”

Nasir maintains a blog for the Express Tribune, on which he explained what inspired him:

“Like most people around me, I was shocked, disgusted and angry at the Peshawar Church Blast incident; a terrorist attack during Sunday Mass. The tragedy came at a time when people were reaching out to God, sharing fears, worries, emotions and secrets. Just to imagine that one cannot even have this personal time with God Almighty anymore is disturbing. The first thought that came to my mind was that a vigil should be held to pay respect to the departed. Hence I decided to initiate it.”

A similar event was recently held at St Patrick’s Cathedral in Karachi, Pakistan, organized by Pakistan For All, a group of Pakistanis concerned about minority groups.

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