Pakistan: Lahore High Court Upholds Blasphemy Death Sentence
The Lahore High Court has rejected an appeal by a Christian convicted of blasphemy and upheld his death sentence. Ayub Masih has been held in custody since being arrested in 1996 for allegedly making derogatory remarks about Muhammad -- though supporters say the blasphemy charge is false and resulted from a property dispute. "The rejection of Ayub's appeal is yet another example of how difficult it is for Christians to obtain justice in Pakistan," said Wilfred Wong of the United Kingdom-based Jubilee Campaign, which has supported Masih's family and case. "[He] is one of many Christians who have been falsely accused by Muslims and have had to pay a heavy price for it." Masih has survived two assassination attempts since he was arrested and suffered dire prison conditions. He has been held in a cell without light and refused medicines. Wong said that there are currently 13 outstanding cases of blasphemy against Christians in Pakistan, whose blasphemy laws have been "repeatedly misused" against minority groups such as Christians.
CHARISMA NEWS SERVICE, Thu, Jul 26, 2001
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