President Zardari condemns attack on church
24 September, 2012
ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari on Sunday condemned the act of burning of a church in Mardan by a mob.
The president, in a message, said that the highly provocative anti-Islam film had been condemned throughout the world, particularly in Pakistan by Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
However, the ransacking of public and private property, particularly the places of worship of other religions, was itself an un-Islamic and highly condemnable act. He said ransacking and vandalising revered places of worship amounted to playing into the hands of those who made the anti-Islam film to incite violence.
Describing the torching of the church as "unfortunate and reprehensibe" the president said that it was contrary to the teachings of Islam, which demanded respect for places of worship of all religions. He said that incidents like this did not bode well for the image of Pakistan and of Muslims, internationally.
The president called upon the provincial government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to take all appropriate measures for protecting the places of worship of Christians and other minorities, address their grievances and take measures to prevent such incidents in future. A mob in Mardan city on Friday set the Sarhadi Lutheran Church on fire and torched the building adjacent to the church.