7 October, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile

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

e-mail this to a friend printable version

» 06/21/2006
Government silent as blasphemy law continues to kill, say Pakistani bishops
In a statement released by the Justice and Peace Commission of the Bishops' Conference of Pakistan the government's negligence vis-à-vis crimes committed in the name of religion and on the basis of blasphemy laws is described as a "real sin".

Lahore (AsiaNews) – The Justice and Peace Commission of the Bishops' Conference of Pakistan has expressed "profound concern" for the evident negligence by the authorities and elected officials who should uphold the law regarding the growing intolerance associated with blasphemy laws.

Fr Emmanuel Yousaf and Peter Jacob, respectively director and executive secretary of the bishops' commission, said in a joint statement that "the horrible murder of Mohammad Sadiq, an elderly school teacher killed last Sunday whilst trying to save someone else from the blasphemy laws, and that of Abdul Sattar, who was killed the next day when he was under police protection, underscore the alarming level of insecurity Pakistani citizens feel as a result of the abuse of religion".

"It is extremely sad that two other lives were sacrificed owing to a legislative void created by the blasphemy laws," the added.

"In the first case we have a respected citizen killed by the people of Hasilpur whilst trying to rescue from a lynch mob the imam of the local mosque, Hafiz Mohammad Qamar, who was being tortured by some miscreants."

"In the second," the statement reads, "we have a man who gets himself killed for allegedly insulting the prophet when in fact all he wanted was a driver to pay his fee."

The so-called blasphemy law or laws refer to article 295, sections B and C, of the Pakistan Criminal Code. The first section covers offences against the Qur'an, a crime punishable with life in prison. The second section imposes either the death penalty or life in prison on anyone found guilty of defaming the Prophet Muhammad.

Since 1996 when the two sections came into effect, a lot of Christians have been killed for defaming Islam. Altogether some 560 people have been charged with 30 still waiting for trial.

Very often the law is used to eliminate adversaries.

According to data provided by different human rights groups, 23 people have died as a result of blasphemy charges, 18 of whom were Muslim. In each case law enforcement authorities did not intervene to stop the murder.

"It is a real sin that the government has allowed this kind of 'unlawful legality' to exist in name of religion, abdicating its duty to tell the people how often the law is misused," the statement said.

"It is important that those guilty of these crimes be brought to justice. For this reason, we call for an immediate inquiry to unmask those responsible for this situation."

e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
05/05/2008 PAKISTAN
Church launches workshop in Lahore to train for peace
by Qaiser Felix
06/05/2008 PAKISTAN
Pakistani Church urges government to uphold the constitution against extremism
by Qaiser Felix
01/23/2008 PAKISTAN
New communications law, new tool for censorship
by Qaiser Felix
08/10/2005 PAKISTAN
Christian charged with blasphemy released
by Qaiser Felix
04/27/2007 PAKISTAN
Mob and police torture Catholic man accused of blasphemy
by Qaiser Felix

Editor's choices
Pope: In “extremely difficult social and marital context”, Church called to carry out mission in fidelity, truth and charity.The opening Mass of the Synod on "The vocation and mission of the family in the Church and in the contemporary world," Pope Francis speaks of the paradoxes of global society: "power" accompanied by loneliness and helplessness." Today's man "ridicules" the family and love, but thirsts for it. The Church bears witness to indissoluble love, but must not forget to care and sustain "the man who falls or who errs." "A Church with closed doors betrays itself and its mission, and instead of being a bridge it becomes a barrier."
Singapore, Japan and Hong Kong in the top ten of the world economyWorld Economic Forum on competitiveness ranking published. Top three unchanged since last year: Switzerland, Singapore and the United States. Japan sixth, followed by Hong Kong. The world economy is slowing down compared to the previous decade, only exception- addition to China - India, which gains 16 positions.
Pope in the US: “We Christians, the Lord’s disciples, ask the families of the world to help us”In the last Mass of the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, Francis Pope highlights the daily "little gestures" that define the family, which is “the right place for faith to become life, and life to become faith". Gratitude, respect, and collaboration with families in which the Spirit operates can be found in every “family, people, region, or religion”.


Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.