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Pakistani Supreme Court overturns death penalty conviction for blasphemy of Christian woman, Asia Bibi

This poor woman, Asia Bibi, has been on death row for years for saying to a group of Muslim women: “I’m not going to convert. I believe in my religion and in Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for the sins of mankind. What did your Prophet Mohammed ever do to save mankind? And why should it be me that converts instead of you?”

Thanks be to God, today the Pakistani Supreme Court acquitted Asia Bibi and ordered that she be freed, after eight years of imprisonment. However, protests have broken out in two major Pakistani cities against this decision. Please keep Asia Bibi in your prayers, praying that she be safe: many people who have been accused of blasphemy in Pakistan have been lynched by mobs without ever having been tried, and her acquittal has clearly not satisfied some elements within the nation.

“Pakistani Christian Asia Bibi has death penalty conviction overturned,” by Sophia Saifi and James Griffiths, CNN, October 31, 2018:

Islamabad, Pakistan (CNN)Pakistan’s Supreme Court has acquitted a Christian woman who has been on death row for almost eight years on blasphemy charges.

Asia Bibi, a mother of five from Punjab province, was convicted of blasphemy in 2010 and sentenced to hang after she was accused of defiling the name of the Prophet Muhammed during an argument the year before with Muslim colleagues.

The workers had refused to drink from a bucket of water Asia Bibi had touched because she was not Muslim. At the time, Asia Bibi said the case was a matter of women who didn’t like her “taking revenge.”

She won her appeal against the conviction and subsequent death sentence on Wednesday.

The court quoted Shakespeare’s “King Lear” in its ruling, saying Asia Bibi appeared to have been “more sinned against than sinning.”

“Even if there was some grain of truth in the allegations leveled in this case against the appellant still the glaring contradictions in the evidence of the prosecution highlighted above clearly show that the truth in this case had been mixed with a lot which was untrue,” the ruling said….

Islamist movement Tehreek-e Labbaik had previously vowed to take to the streets if Bibi was released, and protests broke out in Islamabad and Lahore soon after the ruling was announced.

Within hours, the protests were large enough that government officials in the cities were urging people to stay inside and avoid adding to the chaos….

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