Asia Bibi appeal complainant not even present at time of her alleged ‘blasphemy’

Asia Bibi with Punjab Governor, Salmaan Taseer, who was assassinated for supporting her case. (Photo: Office of the Governor of Punjab)
Asia Bibi’s final appeal against her execution in the Supreme Court of Pakistan went on for more than two hours. Below, World Watch Monitor provides details of what was said. Asia Bibi’s appeal hearing on 8 October took place before a three-member bench – Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, Justice Asif . . . Read More

Pakistan: Islamic groups threaten Supreme Court judges ahead of Asia Bibi ruling

Asia Bibi with Punjab Governor, Salmaan Taseer, who was assassinated for supporting her case. (Photo: Office of the Governor of Punjab)
Extremist religious groups in Pakistan have called for mass protests and threatened the judges of the country’s Supreme Court in Islamabad ahead of their ruling in the blasphemy case of Christian woman Asia Bibi. The hardline Islamic party Tehreek-e-Labaik Pakistan (TLP) threatened the judges in a press conference on YouTube, saying . . . Read More

Algeria: Christian family accused of ‘proselytism’ – hearing postponed

Algeria: Christian family accused of ‘proselytism’ – hearing postponed
Four Algerian Christians accused of proselytism will appear in court on 6 November, in Bouira, in the north-eastern region of Kabylie. They had been due to appear yesterday (9 October), but the hearing was postponed. The four, including three members of the same family, are all from the town of . . . Read More

‘Eliminate’ blasphemy laws, says US commission chief on International Blasphemy Day

In some countries blasphemy is a very sensitive topic and often leads to riots and violence, like in Islamabad, Pakistan, in November 2017.(Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Blasphemy laws are “dangerous” and should be “eliminated”, the chair of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) told Newsweek yesterday on International Blasphemy Day. The freedom to criticise or mock religion should not be decided by governments and their interpretation of laws, said Dr. Tenzin Dorjee. And it . . . Read More

Kurdistan elections: Christian parties want ‘real needs’ of minority to be heard

The site of Mar Elia Church in Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan region, where hundreds of Christians camped, displaced by Islamic State. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
The Christian minority in Iraqi Kurdistan is hoping for its “real” representatives to be voted into the Kurdish regional parliament this Sunday, 30 September, reports Kurdish news service Rudaw. The presidential and parliamentary elections in the semi-autonomous region in northern Iraq are the first after a referendum last year in . . . Read More

Religious freedom a prerequisite for sustainable development, expert says

Poverty cannot be eradicated through government intervention alone but it needs the help of "innovative faith-based initiatives", says Brian Grim. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
As half a million people in 900 cities around the world campaign today for “sustainable” development goals, Brian Grim, president of the Religious Freedom and Business Foundation, argues that this cannot be achieved without religious freedom. “There is a strong and positive relationship between religious freedom and sustainable development as . . . Read More