Call yourself a Muslim—imprisonment for three years.
Profess the Islamic creed—imprisonment for three years.
The list goes on and on.
what life is like for Ahmadi Muslims in Pakistan, who are even sent to
jail for worshipping in non-Ahmadi mosques or public prayer rooms, using
the Islamic greeting in public, and publicly quoting from the Qur’an.
Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is a sect of Islam that believes in the
Messiah, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, to be the promised reformer sent from God
for uniting all faiths. They are the fastest growing sect within Islam
as their presence is in over 200 countries, and they number in the tens
Ahmad was sent to re-establish man’s commune with
God, and prove to the world that the God that used to speak, still
speaks, and the God that used to hear, still hears. He brought Islam
back to its pure and pristine teachings, and as a result there is
everlasting peace within the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
of accepting him however, has been brutal persecution for the past
century. Ahmadi Muslims are a group of Muslims that face state-sponsored
persecution in Pakistan for holding certain beliefs. In 1974,
constitutional changes were made to stop them from practising their
faith. The second amendment states: “A person who does not believe in
the absolute and unqualified finality of the Prophethood of Muhammad
(Peace be upon him)...or recognizes such a claimant as a Prophet or
religious reformer, is not a Muslim...”
Seem like an outdated issue (since the amendment dates back to 1974)?
again. In 2008, two prominent Ahmadi Muslims were brutally murdered on
September 8 and 9, right after a program was aired on Geo TV in
Pakistan, encouraging and provoking the killing of Ahmadi Muslims on
September 7. Since then dozens of Ahmadis have been assassinated and
But in 2010, perhaps the epitome of persecution occurred
in what are now deemed the “Lahore attacks”. Two mosques in Lahore,
belonging to the Ahmadi Muslims, were simultaneously attacked, and
around 86 members were killed, and over 100 injured.
forward to just a month ago, when Canadian citizen and cardiologist Dr.
Mehdi Ali was brutally murdered while he was pursuing humanitarian
efforts in Pakistan. He left the comfort of his home in an affluent
western country, and went to Pakistan to serve patients for free. One
morning after prayers, he went to visit some graves of elders in his
family, and on his way out he was brutally murdered—11 bullets pumped
into his body, as his wife and child watched helplessly.
persecution of Ahmadi Muslims has become a very serious issue and is
drawing international attention. After the killing of Dr. Mehdi Ali,
Canadian MP Judy Sgro said at a press conference, which I attended, that
this had been enough. She said we have spoken lots, but now it is time
to take serious action and ensure that the Pakistani government repeals
The only thing that Ahmadi Muslims can do is flee the
country, but even that’s tough. It is difficult for Ahmadi Muslims to
leave Pakistan for many reasons, the primary one being that you have to
sign an agreement declaring: “I consider Mirza Ghulam Ahmad to be an
imposter, and also consider his followers non-Muslim.”
despite all the persecution, and all the hatred, the Ahmadiyya Muslim
Community is still the fastest growing sect within Islam. They are also
the largest group of Muslims united under one leader, the Khalifa of
Islam, Mirza Masroor Ahmad.
It seems strange, but when you
consider that their universal motto—that they’ve been preaching and
practicing all over the world—is “Love for all, hatred for none”, it
After all, hate begets hate, but love begets love.
as the late fourth caliph of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community used to
say, “Swords can win territories, but not hearts. Forces can bend heads,
but not minds.”