According to Independent Catholic News, the Supreme Court of Pakistan will decide on October 13th whether to approve the execution of Christian mother Asia Bibi, who has been convicted of blasphemy.
Asia is a Christian mom of five and has been in prison for seven years for allegations of blasphemy, a crime punishable by hanging. She was accused of blasphemy after bringing water for her co-workers who are Muslims. They refused to drink, saying she made the water unclean because she is a Christian. The two women demanded Asia to convert to Islam but the latter reaffirmed her faith in Christ. An argument ensued among the three laborers and five days later, a local cleric went to the authorities and accused Asia of blaspheming the Prophet Muhammad’s name.
Release International, an organization that supports persecuted Christians, is calling on Pakistan to release Asia and for Christians to redouble their prayers for her.
“Pakistan must revoke this death sentence, release Asia Bibi and repeal the blasphemy law” says Release International Chief Executive, Paul Robinson. “Time and again, we have seen these laws abused to target individuals and destroy their lives.”
On October 8th, dozens of Christians of Pakistan origin and their supporters converged outside the New South Wales Parliament House in Sydney, Australia calling for Asia’s freedom. Protesters called for the Australian Government to intervene on behalf of Pakistan’s highest profile prisoner. They hope to have a diplomatic engagement between the two governments to ensure that Asia has a fair trial.
Meantime, the American Center for Law and Justice sent a letter to Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States Jalil Abbas Jilani urging him to raise Asia’s case with the Pakistani government. ACLJ reminded Pakistan’s international obligations to religious freedom under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).
Acljorg. (2016). American Center for Law and Justice. http://aclj.org/persecuted-church/christian-mom-asia-bibis-final-appeal-of-death-sentence-for-her-faith-set-to-be-heard-in-just-days
Pakistanchristianpostcom. (2016). Pakistanchristianpostcom. http://www.pakistanchristianpost.com/detail.php?hnewsid=6123
Indcatholicnewscom. (2016). Independent Catholic News. http://www.indcatholicnews.com/news.php?viewStory=31100