Pope Francis condemns attack on Pakistani Christians

Pope Francis condemned the attack on Christians celebrating Easter in Pakistan on Sunday. At least 74 people, 24 of whom children, were killed in the incident.

The pontiff described the attack “reprehensible.” He said Easter “was bloodied by an execrable attack which massacred many innocent people, mostly families of the Christian minority.”

“I appeal to the civil authorities and to all the social components of [Pakistan] to do everything possible to restore security and peace to the population and, in particular, to the most vulnerable religious minorities,” said Pope Francis.

“I repeat, once again, that violence and murderous hatred lead only to pain and destruction; respect and fraternity are the only way to achieve peace,” the pontiff during his Regina Coeli address on Monday.

The attack happened in the eastern city of Lahore.

Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, a Taliban splinter group in Pakistan, claimed responsibility for the attack, which was believed to have been carried out by a suicide bomber.

The March 27 bombing is reported to be the bloodiest attack on Christians in Pakistan since the 2013 church bombing in Peshawar where over 80 people were killed.

Pakistani authorities have already arrested 17 people in a series of raids this week.

Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif canceled a planned visit to the United States after the attack, vowing that his government “will not rest until the cost of this blood is avenged.”

Sources

Vatican Radio
CNN
Christian Post
Catholic News Agency
Image: Christian Post

News category: World.

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