Saturday, November 28, 2009

Pakistani Christian on Run from Taliban Death Threat



Islamic extremist sermonizing leads to altercation at barbershop in South Waziristan.


LAHORE, Pakistan, November 27 (CDN) — A young Christian man is in hiding in Pakistan from Taliban militants who seek to kill him for “blasphemy” because he defended his faith.


In February Jehanzaib Asher, 22, was working in a barbershop his family jointly owns with his cousin in Wana, South Waziristan – a Taliban stronghold in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas in Pakistan’s northwest – when the Islamic militants showed up to try to convert him to Islam.


It was not the first time the Taliban’s Noor Hassan had delivered strident sermons to him and his relatives, and this time Asher decided not to listen silently. He defended Christianity by citing verses from the Bible, and Hassan and another Islamic militant viciously beat him – breaking his left leg and some ribs and leaving his left hand non-functional.


He told Compass that he only defended Christianity and did not comment on Islam.


“One can bear the death of one’s father or mother, but can we keep listening to insults of our religion?” Asher said.


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