Murdered for his faith [Letter]

An American cardiologist, Dr. Mehdi Ali Qamar, was recently murdered in Pakistan for his faith ("American doctor shot dead in Pakistan in suspected sectarian attack," May 27).

He was an Ahmadi Muslim traveling back to his country of origin to volunteer his services at the Tahir Heart Institute in Rabwah, Pakistan, as many Ahmadi doctors do. A few days into his visit he was visiting the graves of other Ahmadis, including his father, when he was gunned down in front of his family by unknown assailants.

Dr. Qamar was one of 137 Ahmadis who have been killed for their faith over the last four years. Since 1984, it has been illegal for Ahmadis to call themselves Muslims or practice Islam, a crime punishable by three years in prison or death.

Many people have been murdered and imprisoned unjustly, but the government does nothing because it has legitimized such hate and violence through its anti-blasphemy laws. These injustices are continuing and have affected other minorities in Pakistan as well. They must be addressed and denounced or they will take more lives and bring even more suffering.

Mohammad Iqbal Khan, Aberdeen

The writer is a member of the Muslim Writers Guild of America.

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