Persecution
Associated Press/Photo by Fareed Khan

Asia Bibi to leave Pakistan as protests increase

by Onize Ohikere
Posted 11/01/18, 12:26 pm

Asia Bibi, a Catholic woman acquitted of blasphemy this week in Pakistan, will leave the country soon, her family said, as hardline Islamists intensified protests over her release. The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Wednesday overturned her 2010 death sentence, saying prosecutors failed to prove she violated the country’s blasphemy law. Bibi’s brother, James Masih, said she is being held at an undisclosed location for security reasons. “She has no other option and she’ll leave the country soon,” he said. France and Spain have offered her asylum.

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Associated Press

Pakistan acquits Asia Bibi, sparking protests

by Onize Ohikere
Posted 10/31/18, 10:22 am

The Supreme Court of Pakistan in a landmark ruling on Wednesday overturned the death sentence of a Catholic woman charged with blasphemy in 2010. Hard-line Islamists in the country responded by staging mass protests in several cities. The court’s three-judge panel said prosecutors failed to prove that Bibi violated the blasphemy law. “Her conviction is set aside and she is to be relieved forthwith if not required in other charges,” Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nasir said. The court announced its decision after an Oct. 8 appeal hearing on her case.

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Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Willing to fight

Foreign Policy | Making religious freedom abroad a high priority in Washington
by Harvest Prude
Posted 10/30/18, 04:06 pm

On Oct. 27, 1998, President Bill Clinton signed the International Religious Freedom Act. The act made religious freedom abroad a priority for America’s diplomacy and gave the United States some bite by requiring sanctions for countries that violated religious liberty. In 1998, then-U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., voted to pass the IRF Act. Two decades later he is the ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, a position the IRF Act created.

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