Pakistan: Celebrating Holy Week under the ‘Shadow of the Gun’
Father Tariq Mehmood, parish priest of St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Peshawar, said celebrating Christian festivals under the “shadow of guns” have become a norm.
“There is a never-ending security alert in our province. Police ask us to take precautions before every gathering. We thank the security agencies for their cooperation,” said Father Mehmood.
At least 10 armed policemen guard the church, located on a main road, during prayer times.
Their number was hiked to 20 on Palm Sunday and 16 Catholic volunteers checked with metal detectors all those who entered the church.
Police are monitoring the Christian enclave in Peshawar to avoid further attacks on Christians in the city, where religious minorities are often targets of hate attacks.