Abu Dhabi: The Pakistani embassy in Abu Dhabi on Monday celebrated the birth of its country’s founder, Mohammad Ali Jannah, and also hosted the Christian community to mark Christmas day.
“Today, we are celebrating both Christmas as well as the birth of Mohammad Ali Jannah, the founder of Pakistan. We have decided to celebrate the two events together to reiterate the ideas and principles our founding father asked us to adhere to, particularly when it comes to respecting the rights of minorities in Pakistan,” said Moazzam Ahmad Khan, Ambassador of Pakistan to the UAE.
Ambassador Khan said that Pakistan would not let extremists drive a wedge between its Muslim and Christian communities, and that the government remained committed to ensuring equal rights to all its citizens.
“It is unfortunate that there are some terrorist groups that are trying to divide and break the unity of Muslims and Christians in Pakistan. The Pakistani government remains very resolute and will not allow these extremist elements to destroy our unity; all lives in Pakistan, whether they are Muslim, Christian, Hindu or Sikh are held dear and sacred to us,” he said.
Ambassador Khan added: “Pakistan was founded on the principles of tolerance and respecting each others beliefs, it is very important for us to ensure that these values continue to be upheld. Being a citizen of Pakistan gives you the right to follow your religion and beliefs,” he said.
Also marking the occasion alongside Ambassador Khan was Reverend James Daniel, from the Church of Pakistan, who commended the embassy’s decision to celebrate the birth of Jinnah along with the Christmas holidays.
“This is a very positive signal for the Pakistani Christian community, we are very happy and pleased to see Christmas celebrated officially by the embassy along with the birth of Jinnah,” he said.
“We have Christians and Muslims coming to celebrate together as one community, and that is important. I have always dedicated a big part of my work towards fostering unity between Christians and Muslims,” he added.