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Christian Woman Kidnapped in Pakistan Escapes

A Christian woman who was kidnapped, forced to marry a Muslim farmer and told to convert to Islam amid a dispute over a loan said today (Monday, May 31, 2010) she has returned home after weeks of “captivity and torture.”

Sania James, 33, was kidnapped April 5 by armed men who stormed her parent’s house in the small town of Rawat, just outside Rawalpindi, neighbors confirmed to Compass. The gunmen allegedly told her father that he would see his daughter again only if he paid off a loan to his employer of 250,000 rupees (US$2,930) plus 30 percent interest, though they had previously agreed upon a rate of 15 percent.

The CDN story said James stated that the armed men took her to her father’s employer, farmer Mohammad Shahbaz Ali, and forced her to marry him. She refused to convert to Islam and was continuously tortured, James said without elaborating. Shahbaz Ali reacted angrily when asked about the alleged incidents. “I refuse to say anything,” he told Compass.

Local Pastor Faraz Samson said he had gone to Shahbaz Ali to end the injustice, but that he wouldn’t listen. “I am shocked that a daughter of a poor man has been kidnapped, and the law can’t do anything,” Pastor Samson said.

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