Asia Bibi, the Pakistani Christian woman accused of blasphemy and sentenced to death in 2010 has today had her sentence confirmed by the Lahore High Court.
She is the first Christian woman to be given the death penalty under Pakistan’s notorious blasphemy laws, and her case sparked global condemnation.
She was accused of blasphemy against the Prophet of Islam and the Qur’an in June 2009, when she worked in the fields.
An argument broke out between her and her co-workers after she brought water for one of them. One of her co-workers said that the mere touch of a Christian had made the water haram, or religiously forbidden for Muslims.
She was told to convert to Islam in order to become purified. Her response was seen as an insult to Islam and she was accused of committing blasphemy.
Her defence argued that two Muslim woman who witnessed the blasphemy lacked credibility and were making a false accusation but the judge upheld their allegations.
After the hearing her lawyer expressed his disappointment, stating that “justice is increasingly in the hands of the extremists”.
The defence will appeal and take the case to the Supreme Court, the final court of appeal in Pakistan.