Pakistan Christian Pastor And Family Beaten And Evicted From Their Home
A Christian pastor and his family have been forcibly evicted from their home in Pakistan.
Michael Robert, pastor of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Farooqabad, a city in Punjab, is the victim of a dispute over the house, which he bought about two years ago.
The property appears at the same time to have been transferred to a third party, according to Morning Star News, an organisation that helps persecuted Christians around the world.
Pastor Robert's family filed a suit for fraud and the judged issued a restraining order barring anyone from forcibly evicting them until ownership was settled.
However, this appears to have been disregarded when more than 50 armed Muslim men stormed the house and attacked the family, a lawyer for advocacy group The Voice Society told Morning Star News.
Aneeqa Maria said: "The attack left Pastor Robert, his father Robert Masih and his wife seriously injured. The assailants arrived in the dark of night and started firing in the air with their weapons to terrorise the locals. They then forced open Pastor Robert's gate and attacked the family, thrashing them violently as they threw household items out in the open."
She said the Christian family was threatened with "grave consequences" if they did not vacate.
A concerned local resident called police who intervened to stop the attack.
Maria accused Islamists of trying to fan religious tensions in the area in the area.
She said that during a meeting at the police station on Friday afternoon, a member of a hard-line group warned that they would take out protest rallies and would make every bid to stop the Christian family from re-entering their home because it was "a Muslim's property".
She said she fears Pastor Robert and his family could be vulnerable to further violence. "Our first priority is to retake possession of the pastor's house," she said.