A group of armed Muslims kidnapped and took turns raping a Pakistani girl after her Christian family refused to convert to Islam.
On Sept. 15, Fiaz Masih was deep in slumber with his wife Mumtaz, six daughters, and two sons, when they were awakened by the forced entry of six men and one woman. The intruders, who were armed with guns, metal poles, and sticks, beat the family severely for refusing to convert to Islam, the British Pakistani Christian Association (BPCA) details.
The Muslim assailants were angered by the family's refusal to embrace Islam, so they tied up and blindfolded the whole family. They also took 20-year-old Arif and 17-year-old Jameela and dragged them into a waiting van, which transported them to an unknown building. There, they tortured Arif but he still refused to convert to Islam.
One of the captors told Arif that they were taking turns raping Jameela and that Arif could only save her by converting to Islam. Although he could hear her sister screaming, he still refused to do so. The following morning, Arif was able to escape and saw that they were inside a big mansion. He believes that his sister had already been moved to another location.
Police have reportedly refused to launch an investigation into the matter despite the existence of eyewitness accounts. The attack has prompted local believers to feel afraid that the same thing will happen to them, too.
Meanwhile, the Church of Scotland's moderator Rev. Dr. Russell Barr has asked U.K. foreign secretary Boris Johnson to pressure the Pakistani government into doing something to stop the persecution of Christians. In a letter, Barr lamented the police protection given to Muslims who kidnap Christians, Christian Today reports.
"Forcible conversion to any religion is a crime, even under Pakistani law. My fear is that if pressure is not brought to bear on the Pakistan government the problem will continue to grow and people will continue to commit such crimes with impunity without any fear of punishment," Barr told Johnson in the letter. "I therefore request that you raise this matter with the Government of Pakistan, asking them to stop this persecution, bring the perpetrators to justice and introduce new legislation as suggested by the Senate committee."
Persecution charity Open Doors says Pakistan's blasphemy law is often used to target local Christians, who make up only two percent of the country's population of 200 million.