Save Christians and Pakistan from the blasphemy law

Blasphemy in Pakistan and the European Court’s attack on the crucifix
Launched today from Rome the European leg (France, Holland, Belgium, Germany) of a campaign to raise awareness in Church and society of the plight and oppression of minorities in Pakistan, particularly the Christian one, due to the blasphemy law. A most unusual unity of purpose joins Islamic fundamentalists and European relativists.
Blasphemy laws and religious discrimination, an attack on Pakistan’s future
Fr Emmanuel Y. Mani speaks at a press conference sponsored by AsiaNews titled “Save Christians and Pakistan from the blasphemy laws”. The international community is putting pressure on the Pakistani government to “stop discrimination and violence against religious minorities.” The country needs “a culture of interfaith harmony and peace.”
Pakistan, the only country in the world with a blasphemy law
Peter Jacob, NCJP executive secretary, slams the creation of an “Islamic State” based on a law that strikes minorities as well as Muslims. Groups in government, parliament and the military back fundamentalism. The activist hopes that a “common front” can emerge to “bring democracy to the country”.
Europe and West should help Pakistan repeal blasphemy legislation
In a press conference organised by AsiaNews, Pakistani Christian activists launch an international campaign to raise awareness about the problem. Their goal is to have blasphemy laws repeal in their home country because they have caused too much violence and discrimination against religious minorities. Pakistan’s civil society wants changes too, unlike the empty promises of the government and the ideology of extremists.
Islamabad asks for "suggestions" from Christians to repeal blasphemy law
In a meeting - called by the government - with the Parliamentary Standing Committee, Christians and activists have called for the "cancellation" of the norm. Government officials will meet Muslim, and Catholic leaders and activists to promote a common path. The fundamentalist wing calls for "investigations" and punishments against those who fight to repeal the law.
Blasphemy legislation strikes minorities and Islamises the country, Pakistan priest says
The Taliban want to destroy democracy and spread a fundamentalist ideology, Fr Bonnie Mendes says. A small fringe is fighting extremism, but they have “no unity of intent.” Christians live in an atmosphere of fear, but are urged to be stronger.
News massacre by extremists as opposition to ‘Islamisation” grows
Human rights activist and columnist call for a return to Ali Jinnah’s vision, which includes freedom of religion. Islamist movements warn the government not to change the laws “if it wants to stay in power”. A suicide attack in Rawalpindi kills 34 and wounds 30.
Blasphemy law: a long list of injustices (An overview)
Under Sections 295 B and 205-C of the Pakistan Penal Code, anyone who desecrates the Qur‘an or defiles the name of the prophet Muhammad is punished with death or life imprisonment. Implemented in 1986 by then dictator, General Zia-ul-Haq, to woo the country’s fundamentalist faction, the laws have become a tool to persecute religious minorities and even Muslims. Almost a thousand people have been charged so far under the law, and hundreds have become its victims.
The Catholic Church in Pakistan (An overview)
Catholics are less than 1% of a total of over 160 million inhabitants. There are two archdiocese in the country, four dioceses and an apostolic prefecture. A small minority but active and appreciated for efforts in education, helping the poor, health care and emergency interventions.
What can be done to abolish Pakistan’s blasphemy laws
Christian activists and members of civil society groups call on Islamabad to repeal the relevant sections of the Pakistan Penal Code. The fundamental principles of an open and multi-confessional society must protect every individual. At the bottom, a list of Pakistani embassies and diplomatic representations is provided.
Pakistani Christians, from freedom to persecution
When Pakistan was created, its Founding Father Ali Jinnah endorsed the principles of religious freedom and equal rights for all, irrespective of caste or creed. The succession of constitutions that followed went counter to these ideals, and opened the door to persecution and violence against minorities. Beside blasphemy, Christians and members of other non-Muslim religions have to deal with the problem of forced conversions and marriages.
Save Christians and Pakistan from the blasphemy law
The blasphemy law - prison and death sentences for those who offend the Koran or Muhammad - is a tool to eliminate religious minorities. AsiaNews launches an awareness campaign for its repeal. Because of this law, since 2001 at least 50 Christians have been killed, families and entire villages destroyed. In the country Islamic and Christian voices appeal for its cancellation.