On Saturday, May 9, a mob of Muslim men attacked and damaged a church in Hakeempura, located in Pakistan’s Shekhupura district. As a result of the attack, the church’s wall and main gate were damaged and a cross was desecrated.
According to local Christians, the attack on Trinity Pentecostal Church in Hakeempura was led by Aoon Abass and Ali Shan.
Pastor Samuel Barkat, head pastor of Trinity Pentecostal Church, reported to police (FIR # 461/20) that the mob had attempted to set the church on fire.
Pastor Barkat told International Christian Concern (ICC) that Trinity Pentecostal Church serves over 350 Christian families in Hakeempura. Pastor Barkat claims that Aoon Abass is attempting to steal the land from the church. Abass’ land is adjacent to the church and he has threatened many times to steal the church’s property.
“Following the COVID-19 lockdown, the church has been closed down and the worshipers are not visiting,” Pastor Barkat explained to ICC. “Therefore, a group of land grabbers wanted to utilize this opportunity for their motives.”
Trinity Pentecostal Church sits on 11 Marla (1 Marla = 272.25 square feet) of land in Hakeempura. The church building is utilized for social gatherings of the Christian community in addition to its use as a center of worship.
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Persecution.org (May 2020) Church in Pakistan Desecrated in Attack by “Land Grabbers”