An Ahmaddiya place of worship in Kotli, Azad Kashmir, was allegedly desecrated and atleast 13 members of the community injured after an attack by dozens of people on Monday.
A spokesperson for the Ahmaddiya community claimed that 60-65 people attacked the place of worship in Bhabra, Azad Kashmir. The spokesperson added that members of the community inside the place of worship were beaten and bullets were also fired.
After injuring the community members, the unknown men ransacked the building and destroyed its minarets, the spokesperson said.
The statement claimed that the attack was not an isolated incident and extremists had been pressuring authorities to desecrate the place of worship.
The Ahmaddiyacommunity has also alleged that the police arrived late which allowed the attackers to flee without being apprhended.
Pakistan’s laws prohibit memebers of the Ahmaddiya community from using shaeayir-e-Islam - rites and rituals associated with Muslims. Although the law does not explicityly ban minarets, places of worship are often desecrated on the allegation of impersonating mosques.