40 Christians arrested during Mass in Saudi Arabia


This happened back in April, but I never heard of it until today, when I saw this Zenit story.

he Catholic Church and human rights groups are asking Pakistan's government to intervene on behalf of 40 Pakistani Christians, arrested by Saudi Arabia's religious police.

Archbishop Lawrence Saldanha of Lahore, called on the authorities to act "immediately" in order to get the release of those detained in Riyadh by the muttawa, reported AsiaNews.

"The government must treat this case without any religious discrimination and act on behalf of its citizens who are living abroad," said the archbishop.

The 40 Pakistani Christians were arrested April 23 as they celebrated Mass in a private residence in the city of Riyadh.

Policemen who raided the premises, where the Eucharist was being celebrated, found Christian books and audiovisual material.

In Saudi Arabia it is illegal to practice any religion other than Islam.

It is not yet clear what might happen to those arrested, as the Saudi authorities have not yet made any public comment about the incident.

Pakistani authorities have also been silent; there has been no word of condemnation for the action or any expression of solidarity towards the victims.
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This page contains a single entry by Papa-Lu published on May 19, 2005 8:16 AM.

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