US voices concern over attacks on churches in Pakistan's Jaranwala

US voices concern over attacks on churches in Pakistan's Jaranwala

Washington (Agencies): The United States (US) has voiced deep concerns over attacks on churches and homes in Pakistani town of Jaranwala in Faisalabad district, following the alleged desecration of the holy Quran, and called for an investigation.

“We are deeply concerned that churches and homes were targeted in response to reported Quran desecration in Pakistan,” State Department Spokesperson Vendant Patel told reporters at his daily press briefing on Wednesday, in response to a question from the correspondent of an private television channel.

“We support peaceful freedom of expression and the right to freedom of religion and belief for everybody,” the spokesperson said.

“And as we have previously said, we are always concerned about incidents of religiously-motivated violence. Violence or the threat of violence is never an acceptable form of expression, and we urge Pakistani authorities to conduct a full investigation into these allegations and call for calm for all those involved.”

Meanwhile, the caretaker Punjab government has ordered a high-level inquiry to probe the incident.

According to media reports, no loss of life was reported during the incident while police had made over 100 arrests so far.

Moreover, it said, footage of the incidents was being analyzed through scientific methods and the Rangers too had been called to the area to help restore calm.

Earlier on Wednesday, Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar on Wednesday said that he was “gutted” by the visuals coming from Jaranwala involving the attack on minorities, assuring that strict action would be taken against law violators.