Some of the world’s most widely-known cases of anti-Christian pressure and violence have arisen in Pakistan, a country whose founder promoted religious freedom. Asia Bibi’s case prompted international condemnation of Pakistan’s anti-blasphemy laws but there are still dozens of Christians and others on death row for blasphemy. Meanwhile, several churches and Christian colonies have been attacked by Islamists in recent years, leading to the loss of many lives. Although Christians are around 2% of the population, they make up about 80% of the workforce dealing with waste management (sewerage and street-cleaning). World Watch Monitor’s journalism brought changes in employment legislation in Punjab for such ‘sweepers’ in September 2015.  `

 

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Pakistani Christian couple acquitted of blasphemy after 7 years on death row

Shagufta Kausar and Shafqat Emmanuel faced execution for allegedly sending ‘blasphemous’ texts to a mosque cleric, from a phone containing a sim registered in Shagufta’s name. The couple have consistently denied all allegations and believe Shagufta’s National Identity Card was purposely misused. Imprisoned since 2013, the couple were convicted and sentenced to death in April 2014. Their appeal was due to be heard in April 2020, six years after they
were sentenced, but it was postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak. At their last two hearings in 2021, the judges left the court as they were due to hear the appeal against their death sentences,

The Pakistani woman who replaced Christian Asia Bibi in her prison cell on death row, a mother of 4, Shaguftah Kausar, has – after a dozen delays since April 2020 due to COVID-19 – been acquitted from the death penalty by Lahore High court. Kausar, with her disabled husband Shafqat […]

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EU Envoy’s threat of trade sanctions played crucial role in Asia Bibi’s freedom

EU Envoy on religious freedom, Jan Figel, meets with Asia Bibi's lawyer, Saif ul Malook in Lahore, December 2017. (Photo: Jan Figel)

Freed Pakistani Christian Aasiya Noreen, known to the world now as Asia Bibi, has pleaded for the many others like her accused of blasphemy who, she says, are still “lying in jail for years – their decisions should also be done on merit. The world should listen to them. “The […]

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Ten years after fake blasphemy charge, Pakistani Asia Bibi reunited with family

Asia Bibi is finally free, almost one decade after she was first imprisoned. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

Asia Bibi’s daughter Eicham was 9 when she saw her mum badly beaten and in front of a mob charged with “blasphemy” against the Prophet Muhammad. For over 9 years, Eicham has visited her on death row in Pakistan. Finally, today, now a young woman at 18, Eicham and her […]

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Lawyer: Asia Bibi is on a plane, destination unknown

Asia Bibi is finally free, almost one decade after she was first imprisoned. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

The lawyer for Aasiya Noreen said 7 Nov. that the Pakistani Christian, whose blasphemy conviction was overturned 31 Oct., was on a plane, destination undisclosed. “No one knows where she will land,” the lawyer, Saiful Malook, told Agence France-Presse in a message via Twitter posted at 7:40 p.m. GMT: In his […]

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