Pakistan witnessed another eventful time in the reporting period. This started with the attacks by Taliban insurgents on a military-run school in Peshawar on 16 December 2014, leaving 144 dead, including 132 schoolchildren. Though the military announced a war against Islamic radicals, it continues a policy of distinguishing between “good” and “bad” jihadists. While it fights the latter, it courts the former (eg. Lashkar-e-Toiba, now Jamaat-ud-Dawah, and the Haqqani network) and uses them as a proxy to reach its goals in neighboring countries such as Afghanistan and India. The recent attacks in December 2014 led to a hasty amendment of the constitution, re-introducing the death penalty and setting up special military courts for terrorism-linked cases, fulfilling two long-standing demands of the military. While observers say that the law’s strongest result is to effectively sideline elected governments, they are also doubtful that the law will reach its goal. According to numbers quoted in newspapers, 49,000 people have been arrested through this new ruling, but only 129 of these were Islamic radicals. The ratio of pickups is even more stunning: while 292,000 people were picked up by the authorities, only 140 Islamic radicals were among them. The situation in Pakistan has become so tight that the very meeting of people is seen as suspicious.
Pakistan's Supreme Court will finally examine Asia Bibi's blasphemy case this Thursday. Pakistani Christians ask their brothers and sisters worldwide to pray for Asia, her lawyer and family.
Samuel Masih, 55, was killed in an early morning attack by a Pakistani Taliban group as he arrived for work. His courage saved the lives of many others, even as he lost his own and passed into glory.
Through your gifts, literacy training is equipping Christians to thrive and evangelize—even under persecution.
Rhea and Mehak’s joy was contagious — their laughter and tears affected everyone in the room. Those who were watching knew they were witnessing something monumental. The reason? The sisters had learned to use pencils, a seemingly small feat for teenagers, but one that marked a major milestone in their pursuit of literacy. And literacy opens doors...
Encouraged to flee, accused Christian woman selflessly replied, "If I flee, what would happen to my Christian neighbors and their houses?"