ISNA Condemns the Anti Christian Riots in Pakistan
August 3, 2004
ISNA is appalled at the news of the riots in Gojra Pakistan in which several homes belonging to the members of Christian community were destroyed and about seven people were killed. This frenzy of fanaticism cannot be associated with any faith. The perpetrators have betrayed a brutal outrage and demeaned themselves as Quran describes asfala safileen (95:5),“the lowest of the low”. Not only do we express our outrage at this behavior as inhuman, we deplore those interpreters of Islam and religious leaders who use a rhetoric that promotes a false sense of insecurity and paranoid in Muslim mobs.
ISNA holds the law and order authorities in the region responsible for these tragic riots. Pakistani government should take the responsibility, apologize to the victims for its failure to provide protection, bring the perpetrators to justice, and provide relief and support to victims. Muslims of Pakistan should collectively rise to the occasion , demonstrate their sympathy and solidarity with the affected members of the Christian community and raise funds to rebuild the Church that has been destroyed.
The insult of Quran, real or rumored is being exaggerated to incite the passions of the common people. This shameful behavior does not do justice to the healing message of respect and love for Christians and people of other faiths given by the Quran. The way to uphold the respect for the Quran is to show the Quranic respect for religious diversity and solidarity with the poor and the week.
ISNA congratulates and takes pride in its Muslim members who raised funds to repair the damaged Church in Pakistan sometime back. We at ISNA stand committed to promote peace and harmony, with other faiths and will be willing to work with other organizations, individuals of all faiths to bring relief healing and comfort to the region.