“You are going to get me killed…I have got my flight back home,” stated Pakistani religious freedom advocate Arafat Mazhar to an audience questioner at Georgetown University. His jarring response emphasized that the conference’s examination of Islamic blasphemy norms in Pakistan no mere academic matter but rather lethal threats to freedom of speech and religion using blasphemy laws
Posts Tagged ‘ Pakistan ’
The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) publicly released its 2016 Annual Report citing allies such as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan as repressing religious freedom as well as North Korea and Vietnam. The commission wants to list both Iraq and Syria which the Obama Administration has resisted.
At least 63 people were killed and more than 300 others injured when a suicide bomber linked to an Islamic terror group blew himself up in a children’s park in Lahore, the capital of Pakistan’s Punjab province, where Christians celebrated Easter, officials and Christians said.
Hours after the attack, Ahmad Marwat, who described himself as a spokesman for Jundullah, or Army of God, a little-known militant group, claimed responsibility for the assault, without explaining why the center was targeted. He warned of more attacks on polio teams in the future.
A young Christian man who was sentenced to life imprisonment in Pakistan on charges of “blasphemy against Islam” has appealed for prayers, ahead of the first hearing in his appeal case against the ruling. Sajjad Masih Gill, 31, spent four years behind bars in Pakistan’s Punjab province on what he views as false accusations.
By Andrew Herrod: “We witness our Christian faith and proclaim the word of God in the land where Islamic fundamentalists and extremists are in power,” stated recently a Pakistani Christian to a Washington, DC, area Christian gathering. Speaking anonymously for fear of reprisals back home, “Thomas” expressed with somewhat rudimentary English stark views about Islam
Two Muslim men who raped two Christian sisters in Pakistan last year have been acquitted after Islamists pressured a key witness not to testify and a prosecutor failed to show up in court, family and legal sources said.
Islamist groups are threatening the family and attorney of a young Christian man shot dead by Muslim in-laws who also wounded his wife over her decision to marry him and leave Islam, the attorney said. Aleem Masih, 28, married Nadia, 23, last year after she put her faith in Christ.
Pakistan must break the vicious cycles of impunity and lawlessness by arresting, prosecuting, and jailing all perpetrators of violence against religious communities and their advocates. It must hold police officers accountable for turning a blind eye to attacks or refusing to file police reports when the victims are members of religious minorities
Panel experts discuss Pakistan continued slide to an Islamist State based on total intolerance. “Pakistan’s zealous enforcement” of blasphemy laws, Lantos-Swett observed, “is in stark and embarrassing contrast to the pronounced lack of zeal in bringing to justice” those who kill in Islam’s name.