Islamabad: Authorities in the Pakistani capital have enhanced security ahead of Christmas and deployed additional policemen at churches and Christian neighbourhoods after a church received a threatening letter.
Our Lady of Fatima Church, located in Sector F-8 in the heart of Islamabad, received an anonymous letter on November 14 that threatened the church with an attack for organising a prayer service for Malala Yusufzai, the teenage rights activist who was recently targeted by the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan.
Islamabad Police chief Bin Yamin told the media that comprehensive security arrangements have been made for Christmas.
Other officials said over 300 policemen will be deployed around churches and areas with sizeable Christian populations.
Fool-proof security arrangements have been put in place and worshippers will be allowed to enter churches only after being searched with metal detectors and thoroughly frisked, officials said.
Walk-through gates will be installed at the entrances of churches.
Forested areas near churches will be searched and three special police squads and commandos will patrol nearby neighbourhoods around churches.
Father Rehmat of Fatima Church was quoted by Dawn newspaper as saying that the church had received a threatening letter.
The police was informed about the letter but no arrests were made, he said.
Margalla Police Station chief Irshad Abro said police were investigating the matter but had not uncovered any credible information as to who was behind the threat.