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Pakistani christian children seized by Islamist slave traders.

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Submitted by Arvind Madhavan (India), May 22, 2006 at 03:20

This is disgusting. I hope they all rot in hell.

Rescued – the Pakistan children seized by Islamist slave traders : Timesonline, UK.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2089-2189789,00.html

Another article : Reunited: boys saved from slavers

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Rescued – the Pakistan children seized by Islamist slave traders : Timesonline, UK.

An excerpt from 5 page long article:

" The slave traders came for 10-year-old Akash Aziz as he played cops and robbers in his dusty village in eastern Punjab.

Akash, still in the maroon V-neck sweater and tie that he had worn to school that day, was a "robber". But as he crouched behind a wall, waiting for the schoolfriend designated as the "cop" to find him, a large man with a turban and a beard grabbed him from behind and clamped a cloth over his nose and mouth before he could cry for help.

NI_MPU('middle'); He recalls a strange smell and a choking sensation. "Then I fainted," said Akash, a delicate little child from a loving family that takes pride in his enthusiasm for English lessons at school.

Akash woke up in a dark room with a bare brick floor and no windows. The heat was suffocating. As he languished there over the next month, 19 other panic-stricken boys were thrown into the room with him.

The children, all Christians, had fallen into the hands of Gul Khan, a wealthy Islamic militant and leading member of Jamaat-ud Daawa (JUD), a group linked to the Al-Qaeda terrorist network.

Khan lives near Pakistan's border with Afghanistan, but when in the Punjab he stays at the JUD's headquarters in Muridke, near Lahore, where young men can be seen practising martial arts with batons on rolling green lawns patrolled by guards with Kalashnikovs. Osama Bin Laden funded the centre in the late 1990s.

The JUD, which claims to help the poor, says that it has created a "pure Islamic environment" at Muridke that is superior to western "depravity". Khan's activities explode that myth. He planned to sell his young captives to the highest bidder, whether into domestic servitude or the sex trade. The boys knew only that they were for sale.

This is the story of the misery that Akash and his friends, aged six to 12, endured in captivity; of their rescue by Christian missionaries who bought their freedom and tried to expose the kidnappers; and of the children's moving reunions with their loved ones who had believed they were dead.

Last week I had the privilege of taking six of the boys home to their families, including Akash. The astonishment of mothers and fathers who had given up hope and the fervent, tearful embraces made these some of the most intensely emotional scenes I have witnessed.

That joy was a long time coming. On the first day after his abduction, Akash was left in no doubt about the brutality of the regime he would endure.

"I drank from a glass of water and one of the kidnappers pushed me so hard I fell on the glass and it broke in my hands," he said. His slender fingers still bear the scars. No more glass for him, he was told: he was fit to drink only from a tin cup.

The boys were ordered not to talk, pray or play. Five of them were playing a Pakistani equivalent of scissors, paper, stone one day when the guards burst in and beat them savagely on their backs and heads. On another occasion Akash was repeatedly struck by guards yelling "What is in your house?" "I kept telling them, ‘We have nothing'," he said anxiously. "I was so afraid they would go back and rob my father and mother." It is painful to imagine blows raining down on the ribs of so slight a figure.

The guards mostly sat outside playing cards, shaded from the 116F heat by a tree. But the boys were allowed out of their room only to use a filthy hole-in-the-ground lavatory. All they could see were high walls around the two-room building that was their prison. The other room was always locked.

The children were fed once a day on chapatis and dhal, but never enough. Akash slept huddled against the others on the floor and woke each morning a little more resigned to his fate.

"We just sat around the walls thinking," Akash said. "We were remembering our homes and our mothers and fathers and hoping someone would rescue us. But nobody came."...."

Submitting....

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