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Pakistan mob’s violent eviction of sole Christian family in village

South Asia

Pakistan mob’s violent eviction of sole Christian family in village

Pakistan’s new President, Imran Khan. Photo credit: Getty Images

A mob of Muslim neighbours attacked and set fire to the home of a Christian family in the Punjab village of Gujar Khan on 21 September, in a horrific eviction.

Bashir Masih, a 60-yaer-old retired Christian sanitary worker, described how he and his wife were standing on their doorstep on 20 September when the mob, “attacked us without any provocation … They called us Chuhra [a term commonly taken to mean latrine cleaner, used to insult Christians] and beat both of us mercilessly,”

Bashir and his family are the only Christians in the village. He has been living there with his four grown-up sons for five years.

The following day, the family received a threatening phone call at 4 am, warning them to leave the house or be killed. That afternoon, at least twelve armed men stormed the house and attacked the whole family.

“They stripped the clothes of my daughters-in-law”, said Bashir, “and forced them out on the street. They also threw the children, some as young as two, against the walls. My sons and I were hit with gun butts and iron rods amid volleys of abuse and threats.”

Watched by the entire village, the men looted jewellery and other valuables from the house before setting on fire. At the time of writing police have not made any arrests.