It is with sadness that I heard the news of the assassination of Punjab’s Governor Salmaan Taseer's.
Mr Taseer was a moderate voice within the Pakistani’s People Party, (the ruling party in Pakistan). He was well aware of the negative impact that blasphemy laws were having on members of Pakistan’s religious minorities, particularly Pakistani Christians. His support for minorities was evident through his visit to Aasia Bibi, the Christian Pakistani woman sentenced to death for alleged blasphemy. Christians in Pakistan and elsewhere are mourning his death
Sadly, it is not the first time that major political figures have been assassinated in Pakistan. The cocktail of diversity in religious interpretation and political dissention is causing a schism within the fabric of the country. I encourage everyone, regardless of their faith to pray that this schism does not widen. The use of violence to silence dissention should not be set as a precedent for future generations of Pakistanis.
Personally, I will be praying for the establishment of peace in Pakistan and for the nurturing of bridges of respect and understanding within our Pakistani community in Scotland.