A fresh blasphemy row has broken out in a Lahore township where Christians fear they may become a target for violence.
Christian Adnan Masih, a 25-year-old teacher, has been in hiding since October 8 when he was accused of writing blasphemous comments in a book about Islam, left in the shop where his brother worked. The accusations were made by one of the shop’s employees, who is a Muslim.
Shop owner Mushtaq Masih, who runs the glass and aluminium business, was immediately taken into custody, apparently in Adnan’s place. Adnan’s brother and uncle are also being held illegally, say Release partners who are supporting both Masih families.
Local Christians in this area of Lahore, known as Bahadar Pura Bahar colony, say they fear a repeat of the rioting in Joseph Colony, Lahore, during a similar blasphemy row in March (Prayer Alert, March 11). Release partners have urged local police to implement security measures to protect Christians and avoid an outbreak of violence.
(Source: Release partners)
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- Pray God’s peace and protection over the 50 Christian families in Bahadar Pura Bahar colony, Lahore.
- Pray for the immediate release of Mushtaq Masih and Adnan’s relatives. Pray that no charges will be brought against Adnan; ask God to protect him.
Pastors whose churches were attacked in Egypt (Prayer Alert, October 9) are working for reconciliation with their Muslim neighbours. Pastor Amir Labib of the Baptist church in Bani Mazar in Minya has refused to press charges against his attackers. The church has had good relations with its neighbours, helping them out with weddings and funerals. A pastor’s wife at an Assemblies of God church in Minya told Release she has forgiven those who tried to burn their church. ‘I am praying for God to bless them,’ said Nadia Saed. Please pray that God would bless the churches’ efforts to bring about reconciliation.