ASIA/PAKISTAN - A Christian leader killed in the bloodiest month in the history of the country

Lahore (Agenzia Fides) - Chaudhry Irshad Younas, a Christian activist involved in society and in politics was assassinated in Lahore with three gun shots. The murderer, according to initial investigations seems to be another Christian, Nadeem Sohtra, who killed on the evening of April 27 for reasons that police are trying to clarify. In a joint statement, sent to Fides, the two NGOs, "Masihi Foundation" and "Life for All" recall Younas as "a leader ready to speak out against injustice, passionate in the fight to bring change, who sacrificed his life for the poor and the marginalized Christians living in Youhanabad ", near Lahore, where he lived. The life of Christians in Pakistan is not easy, for reasons of violence, discrimination, sometimes even persecution. But the month of April 2012 will go down in history as one of the most tragic, for the loss of 265 lives in two accidents: on April 7th 138 Army members, including three Christian soldiers (Asif Masih, Moon Gul and Naveed Masih ) were buried alive by a huge avalanche of snow that hit their field in Gayari, Siachen (on the border with India), known as "the highest battlefield in the world." In a second accident, on April 20, 127 passengers (including a Christian) on a flight between Karachi and Lahore were killed in a plane crash near Islamabad. As reported to Fides, the National Council for Interreligious Dialogue organized a prayer meeting in past days in Lahore to commemorate the victims. Muslim, Christian, Hindu leaders were present along with all other religions and with the faithful of all religious communities that lit candles and prayed for the victims. In these tragic events, remarks to Fides Fr. Francis Nadeem, a priest present at the celebration, "Pakistani citizens find unity and solidarity that we hope will live in all the circumstances of social life." (PA) (Agenzia Fides 30/4/2012)