Minorities Report: The State Backed Persecution of Ahmadies in Pakistan

International Herald Tribune: By HUMA YUSUF:  LONDON — On Monday, a dozen masked gunmen said to be affiliated with the ­Taliban and Lashkar-e-Taiba broke into a graveyard in an elite neighborhood of Lahore, the historic capital of Punjab Province. They tied up the guard, a caretaker and about 20 visitors, and then vandalized 120 gravestones.

Anti-Ahmadi sentiment is so pervasive among Pakistanis that even members of the community who should be hailed as national heroes are vilified. It was a graveyard for Ahmadis, a minority sect that identifies itself as Muslim but is rejected by most Pakistanis as heretical for believing there was a prophet after Muhammad. The vandals destroyed gravestones inscribed with Koranic verses; they frown on Ahmadis’ using Muslim prayers in epitaphs.

As Pakistan grows increasingly intolerant of minorities, Ahmadis are becoming prime targets of both violence and widespread discrimination.

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