The U.K.-based Christian Solidarity Worldwide has called on Pakistan's Supreme Court to be prompt in hearing the appeal of Asia Bibi, a Christian woman and mother of five children whose death sentence for "blasphemy" was upheld by the Lahore High Court this week.
CSW also called for proper security for Bibi, whose appeal was rejected by the Lahore High Court Thursday.
The Christian mother has "endured grueling conditions in nearly four years of detention on death row, much of it spent in solitary confinement," CSW said in a statement. "Her health has suffered and she has had severe restrictions on visitors." more >>
The death sentence of Asia Bibi, a Christian woman and mother of five children, was upheld by the Lahore High Court in Pakistan on Thursday. Bibi has been convicted of blasphemy for drinking from the same bowl of water as Muslims and making derogatory comments about the prophet Muhammad.
"The case against Asia Bibi is a great example of how Christians and other religious minorities are abused in Pakistan by fundamentalists wielding the controversial blasphemy laws. The blasphemy laws were originally written to protect against religious intolerance in Pakistan, but the law has warped into a tool used by extremists and others to settle personal scores and persecute Pakistan's vulnerable religious minorities," said International Christian Concern's Regional Manager for South Asia, William Stark.
"Sadly, the vast majority of blasphemy accusations brought against Christians and others are false. Unfortunately, pressure from Islamic radical groups and general discrimination against Christians in Pakistan has transformed trial courts and now appeals courts into little more than rubber stamps for blasphemy accusations brought against Christians, regardless of the evidence brought to bear in the case." more >>
The leader of the Anglican Church of Hong Kong has issued a statement calling for "dialogue" between pro-democracy protestors and government officials.
Archbishop Paul Kwong issued the statement Tuesday where he said that he was "saddened and distressed by the increasing social conflict."
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has reportedly reappeared in public photos published by North Korean state media in an attempt to halt rumors regarding his whereabouts. Kim, who hadn't been seen in over a month and missed several important public dates, appeared to be walking with the aid of a cane in the new images.
Kim was pictured offering field guidance to a newly built residential district, and visiting the Natural Energy Institute of the State Academy of Sciences, CNN said based on state media reports. The photos show the 31-year-old leader walking with a cane, smiling and surrounded by government officials.
The photos portray Kim's first public appearance since Sept. 3, when he was last seen attending a concert with his wife. more >>
A Chinese pastor, one of several in recent months to be arrested in a massive government crackdown on Christians, said that he is "grateful" to God for giving him the opportunity to go to jail. Forty-year-old Huang Yizi is facing up to seven years in prison for speaking out against the government's demolitions of churches.
Huang was placed under arrest in August, The Telegraph reported on Monday, and was taken from his home in front of his wife and two children. He was charged with "gathering crowds to disturb social order."
A similar charge has been used to arrest other pastors, including Zhang Shaojie, in the wake of Chinese government officials ordering the demolition of a number of churches. more >>
WASHINGTON – The Chinese Communist Party, which has maintained its rule over the people of China for over 60 years, is more dangerous than terrorist groups such as ISIS, well-known blind Chinese human rights activist Chen Guangcheng implied on Thursday.
The Chinese government recently celebrated the 34th anniversary of its one child per family policy and the government estimates that over 400 million lives have been "prevented" with about 13 million abortions happening each year.
Chen, a self-taught lawyer who fought for the rights of Chinese women and was imprisoned by the communist government for over four years during the mid to late 2000's, told attendees at a Heritage Foundation event that the majority of the abortion require authorities to physically abduct women and forcibly take them to abortion clinics. more >>