Asia Bibi was acquitted of blasphemy by the Pakistani Supreme Court after spending eight years in prison on death row. Now her case is being reconsidered because so many people in Pakistan are demanding her death despite her acquittal. And even if her acquittal stands, she will not be out of danger: many people who have been accused of blasphemy in Pakistan have been lynched by mobs, some without ever having been tried. Until she is able to leave Pakistan, she will never be safe. In fact, even if she makes it out of that country safely, she will always be in danger from people who believe that she blasphemed. The British government has refused to grant her asylum for fear that her presence will cause riots in that country.
Asia Bibi suffered in prison for eight years for her faith in Jesus Christ. May that same Christ now grant her safety, security, serenity, and peace.
“Pakistan’s top court to decide Asia Bibi’s fate as Muslim extremists demand her death,” by Leah MarieAnn Klett, Christian Post, January 24, 2019:
Pakistan’s top court will decide next week whether a challenge against the acquittal of Christian mother Asia Bibi can proceed as radical Islamists continue to call for her execution.
Bibi’s lawyer, Saiful Malook, revealed that on Jan. 29 Pakistan’s Supreme Court will review a petition launched by Islamists calling for her blasphemy conviction to be overturned, the Pakistani news outlet Dawn reports. If the court rejects the petition, Bibi will finally be free to leave Pakistan.
The 47-year-old mother-of-five, who was on death row for eight years, was accused by Muslim farm laborers of having insulted the Islamic prophet Muhammad, which is an offense punishable by death in Pakistan.
She was convicted despite denying the charges, and in October the Supreme Court overturned the guilty verdict. The decision sparked nationwide protests by Muslim hardliners, prompting authorities to take Bibi into hiding. Since her acquittal, she has since been living at a secret location, under guard.
Muslim extremists have threatened to kill anyone who supports Bibi, and in efforts to end the violence, authorities struck a deal with protesters. As part of the agreement, the Pakistani government pledged she would remain in the country until the Supreme Court reviews the petition against her acquittal.
A three-member bench will hear the review petition, which claims that the Supreme Court’s acquittal of Bibi did not meet the standards of jurisprudence as well as Islamic provisions.
Ghulam Mustafa Chaudhry, the lawyer who filed the petition seeking an appeal, told AFP the court is expected to decide the same day if the appeal is admitted or not.
In December, he told the BBC he gets “a lot of peace” from prosecuting alleged blasphemers like Bibi and “will be rewarded for it in the hereafter.”
“For us the most sacred thing is [Islamic] prophet Muhammad. Everything we do is for him,” he said, insisting that no Muslim would ever falsely accuse a non-Muslim of committing blasphemy.
Despite her release from prison, Bibi continues to live in fear of being killed and is guarded by security forces who’ve barred her from even opening a window, an unidentified friend revealed earlier this month. She’s also undergoing treatment for various illnesses she suffered while in prison….