05 December 2016
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas




  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia

  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato


    » 10/16/2014, 00.00

    PAKISTAN

    Asia Bibi's sentence is heart breaking, may the world pray for her, says Islamabad bishop

    Jibran Khan

    After five postponements, the High Court upholds the death penalty for the Christian woman, who has become a symbol of the fight against blasphemy. Her lawyers vow to take her case to the Supreme Court. Heartbroken by the sentence, Islamabad bishop calls for prayers. On Sunday, events are being organised across the country to show solidarity towards Asia Bibi.

    Lahore (AsiaNews) - After a hearing that lasted several hours, the Lahore High Court today upheld the death penalty sentence passed by a lower court against Asia Bibi, following her conviction in 2010 on blasphemy charges in 2010. Since then she has been on death row.

    In Pakistan, many civil society groups have expressed solidarity towards the Christian mother of five, as well as strong concern about the court's decision, which came after five postponements.

    Human rights activists and organisations around the world are also demanding justice for a woman who has become a symbol of the struggle against Pakistan's infamous "black law".

    Her lawyers vowed to appeal to the Supreme Court, the third and final stage in legal proceedings, hoping that the conviction will be overturned.

    Asia Bibi was sentenced to death in November 2010 and since then has been in solitary confinement for security reasons, a symbol of the struggle against blasphemy.

    In 2011, Punjab governor Salman Taseer, a Muslim, and Minority Affairs Minister Shahbaz Bhatti, a Catholic, were both murdered for coming to her defence.

    On several occasions, Pakistani Christians organised days of fasting and prayer for her release, joined by Muslims as well.

    In its ruling, the court upheld the allegations made by two Muslim women who claim to have heard Asia Bibi's blasphemy.

    Speaking to AsiaNews, lawyer Naeem Shakir said, "the court heard the closing arguments and then adjourned". Shortly after, the ruling was announced upholding the "death sentence."

    For Mgr Rufin Anthony, bishop of Islamabad/Rawalpindi, the court's decision is "heart breaking".

    In view of the situation, he calls on Christians around the world to "join us for a day of prayer for Asia Bibi and others accused of blasphemy."

    "We will have the day of prayer for the condemned on Sunday," said Fr James Asher, from the Archdiocese of Lahore. "We urge everyone to be a part of it".

    With a population of more than 180 million people (97 per cent Muslim), Pakistan is the sixth most populous country in the world, the second largest Muslim nation after Indonesia.

    About 80 per cent of Muslims are Sunni, whilst Shias are 20 per cent. Hindus are 1.85 per cent, followed by Christians (1.6 per cent) and Sikhs (0.04 per cent).

    Scores of violent incidents have occurred in recent years, against entire communities (Gojra in 2009, and Joseph Colony, Lahore, in March 2013), places of worship (Peshawar, September last year) and individuals ( Sawan Masih, Asia Bibi, Rimsha Masih and Robert Fanish Masih, who died in prison), often perpetrated under the pretext of the country's blasphemy laws.

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version










    See also

    15/03/2014 PAKISTAN
    Asia Bibi’s appeal to be heard by Lahore High Court
    After more than four years in prison, sentenced to death without trial for "blasphemy", the Pakistani Christian will appear before High Court judges in two days time. The Centre for Legal Aid, Assistance and Settlement, which has taken up her case, appeals to the court to "not give in to pressure from fundamentalists and make sure that justice wins out”.

    30/11/2010 PAKISTAN
    Lahore High Court to issue date for Asia Bibi’s appeal
    President Zardari’s legal expert says the woman was convicted without been able to present her side of the story. “Some people are trying to politicise the matter and create a gap between the judiciary and the government,” a presidential spokesman says. The AsiaNews online petition on behalf of Asia Bibi and against the blasphemy law continues.

    31/05/2007 PAKISTAN
    Another Christian condemned to death for blasphemy, without any proof
    A Pakistani district court has condemned to Younis Masih, accused of having offended Muhammad and the Koran. His defence lawyer denounces the lack of any proof and police negligence and prepares an appeal.

    02/12/2010 PAKISTAN
    Asia Bibi: fears over safety, controversy over stay on pardon
    The lawyers of the Supreme Court to protest stay on pardon by the President. A committee will hear religious and political leaders and experts will present to Parliament proposals to amend the blasphemy laws. Date for the appeal against the death sentence still not set.

    16/11/2010 PAKISTAN
    Bishop of Islamabad, Asia Bibi case "a disgrace" . A campaign by AsiaNews
    Mgr. Rufin Anthony the blasphemy law “must be repealed; it does not fit with 21st century world " Petitions to save Asia Bibi and repeal the blasphemy law in Pakistan, Italy, USA, India, France. Within hours, the AsiaNews site received over 500 signatures. Even cloistered monasteries prayfor Asia Bibi. A text to send to President Asif Zardari.



    Editor's choices

    IRAQ
    "Adopt a Christian from Mosul": A Christmas gift to survive winter

    Bernardo Cervellera

    As Iraqi troops advance in the Nineveh Plain and Mosul, a new wave of refugees could overshadow the fate of other refugees who found hospitality in Kurdistan. People need kerosene, winter clothes, aid for children, and money for rent. The campaign AsiaNews launched two years ago is more urgent than ever. Give up a superfluous gift to offer refugees an essential gift for life.


    IRAQ
    Pastor of Amadiya: Mosul’s Christian refugees, torn between emergency aid and the longing to return home

    P. Samir Youssef

    In a letter Fr. Samir Youssef describes the situation of refugees, exiled from their home for more than two years. They are closely following the offensive to retake Mosul, although their homes and churches "are for the most part" burned or destroyed. With the arrival of winter there is a serve lack of heating oil, clothes, food and money to pay for their children’s school bus. An appeal to continue to support the AsiaNews campaign.


    AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!

    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.
     

    SUBSCRIBE NOW

    News feed

    Canale RSScanale RSS 

    Add to Google









     

    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®