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Pakistani PM Praises Slain Christian Minister At Memorial


Police officials inspect the bullet-riddled car of Minorities Minister Shahbaz Bhatti following the deadly attack in Islamabad on March 2.

Police officials inspect the bullet-riddled car of Minorities Minister Shahbaz Bhatti following the deadly attack in Islamabad on March 2.

Pakistan's prime minister has told mourners at a funeral mass for a Christian politician killed by suspected Islamist militants that the government will do its "utmost" to bring his killers to justice.

Shabhaz Bhatti, minister for minorities and the only Christian in Pakistan's government, was shot dead in Islamabad on March 2.

Al-Qaeda and the Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for killing Bhatti who opposed Pakistan's controversial blasphemy laws.

In his eulogy at Bhatti's funeral service, Prime Minister Raza Yousuf Gilani did not specifically mention Islamist extremists or the blasphemy laws.

Bhatti was the second Pakistani politician killed in two months for opposing the blasphemy laws which impose the death penalty for insulting Islam.

He is to be buried in his home village near Faisalabad later today.

Christians make up around 5 percent of Pakistan's 180 million people.

compiled from agency reports
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