Pakistani teen set on fire for being a Christian forgives attackers before dying

(Nouman Masih)

A teenage boy in Pakistan who was set on fire by two Muslims because he was a Christian died as a result of his injuries on Wednesday.

Nouman Masih, 15, told investigators that he was approached in the street by the two Muslims last Friday and asked which religion he adhered to.  

When he told them he was a Christian, they proceeded to douse him in kerosene, beat him and set him alight.

The flames were put out by passers-by but Masih suffered burns to 55 per cent of his body. 

He was taken to Meo Hospital in Lahore, Punjab Province, but doctors were unable to save him and he died at around 1:30am on Wednesday morning. 

The British Pakistani Christian Association (BPCA) has set up a fund in support of Masih's family to help them cover the cost of his funeral.  

Head of the BPCA Wilson Chowdhry expressed his sorrow over Masih's death, saying that the hospital did not have a special burns unit and the organisation was unable to have him moved to another hospital because of his frail condition. 

He said Masih had forgiven his attackers before passing away. 

"Nouman was brave throughout his pain and spoke of forgiveness for his attackers. He dies a martyr and will no doubt be with the Lord today," he said.

"Please pray for his family who have had to endure five days of extreme heartache and can expect little justice." 

It is believed Masih was attacked in retaliation for attacks on Muslims after two churches were bombed in Lahore, killing 17 and wounding 80.

Pakistan's Christian minority has become increasingly frustrated with government and police inaction in the face of ongoing persecution.

Christians make up only two per cent of Pakistan's population and it is not uncommon for members of the Christian community to be attacked, killed, raped or falsely accused of blasphemy - a crime that carries the death sentence.

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