Lahore (Agenzia Fides) - "We are shocked and worried. Christians in Pakistan are now wondering: what country do we live in? The horrible and barbaric execution of a Christian couple, accused of blasphemy, is an act that offends justice, human rights, human dignity, civilization, and is contrary to the rule of law. Today we will demonstrate for justice and human rights in Lahore. On the blasphemy law, we call for the UN to intervene": this is what Fr. James Channan OP, a Dominican, Director of the "Peace Center" in Lahore, research center engaged in interreligious dialogue says in an interview with Agenzia Fides, commenting on the murder of the Christian couple, burned alive in the district of Kasur in Punjab (see Fides 04/11/2014).
"I am convinced that the married couple did not commit blasphemy. And even if the accusation were verified, there are procedures to be followed. We cannot allow lynching or a mass execution to be carried out by those who believe they are above the law. This is a strong request to the government", notes Fr. Channan. In fact, "for incidents of violence which occurred in the past (in Gojra, in Shantinagar and other places) none of the guilty were punished. Impunity fuels violence. We ask the Special Commission created by the Government of Punjab to submit a report immediately and to punish those involved in this barbaric act", adds the priest.
To express their outrage and to demand justice and respect for the law, today many Christian organizations and civil society groups that defend human rights, along with Muslim citizens, will gather in the street in Lahore. The Dominican concludes: "We will ask the UN to intervene. Careful and neutral analysis is needed with regards to the blasphemy law, its exploitation and its consequences. We call for a special UN commission to come to Pakistan. If this law is not stopped and corrected, there will be more accidents and tragedies like this". (PA) (Agenzia Fides 05/11/2014)