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Insha’Allah – Pakistan’s Christian Minority
In the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Christians represent 2.5% of the population – a minority living in a climate of tension and repression due to the institution of Sharia. Social segregation forces them to the most humble of work. They also live segregated in ghettos in the seven dioceses of the country, which are guarded by armed volunteers for fear of attacks.
Worstening the violent atmosphere is the ‘Law 295’ against blasphemy: the punishment can be anything from three years of jail to capital death for those who offend religious beliefs. The law is being exploited to threaten and discriminate minorities – a simple dispute soon becomes an accusation of blasphemy involving innocent victims. Speaking out against blasphemy laws caused the death of Shabaz Batti, the minister for Minorities, amongst others. Shabaz Batti, the only Catholic member of government, was killed on 2nd March 2011.
Photographer: Marco Gualazzini
Camera: Canon 5d mark II