Pakistan's Supreme Court has finally set a court date for the final appeal hearing for Asia Bibi, a Christian mother of five who was sentenced to death in 2010 on accusations of blasphemy.
According to the Christian persecution watchdog agency International Christian Concern, Bibi, also known as Aasiya Noreen, will have her final appeal heard before the country's highest court during the second week in October.
"The Chief Justice [of] Pakistan has ordered that Asia Bibi's appeal be fixed in the second week of October for final hearing," Bibi's Supreme Court lawyer Saif-Ul-Malook told ICC. "I will appear before the Supreme Court of Pakistan and argue her case while she will remain in prison. I hope [the] result will be an acquittal." more >>
QUETTA, Pakistan — A suicide bomber in Pakistan killed at least 63 people and wounded dozens more in an attack on mourners gathered at a hospital in Quetta, according to officials in the violence-plagued southwestern province of Baluchistan.
The bomber struck as more than 100 mourners, mostly lawyers and journalists, crowded into the emergency department to accompany the body of a prominent lawyer who had been shot and killed in the city earlier in the day, Faridullah, a journalist who was among the wounded, told Reuters.
Abdul Rehman Miankhel, a senior official at the government-run Civil Hospital, where the explosion occurred, told reporters that at least 63 people had been killed, with more than 50 wounded, as the casualty toll spiked from initial estimates. more >>
The National Commission for Justice and Peace has found that Pakistani school textbooks are full of material that incite hatred and intolerance against non-Muslims, including Christians, which it said was a "red flag" for the country.
"This is not only about religious minorities but a national issue," NCJP Executive Director Cecil Shane Chaudhry said, according to AsiaNews. "It is a red flag for the government, which must ask the Church to promote the role of minorities in creating and defending the country."
The human rights group released a 40-page study that analyzed state-approved school material in Pakistan's four provinces, and concluded that children are taught religious fanaticism and extremism. more >>
The father of a 16-year-old Pakistani Christian girl who was sexually assaulted by Muslim attackers in Sheikhupura, Punjab, has said that he sees no hope in his quest to find justice for his daughter, criticizing the country's legal system.
"Obviously the police will not implicate them," Nasar Masih said of his daughter's rapists, according to Christians in Pakistan.
Masih's daughter was reportedly raped by 23-year-old Muhammad Iqrar and his accomplices on July 7. The father managed to break into Iqrar's house after hearing his daughter's cries, though the attackers fled the scene of the crime. more >>
The father of a 14-year-old Pakistani Christian girl was shot and killed after he tried to rescue his daughter who was kidnapped and forced into an Islamic marriage to a man she works for as a domestic servant.
The British Pakistani Christian Association, which reports on issues of Christian persecution in Pakistan, said that the girl, Mehwish, had been working as a domestic servant at the house of an Islamic man, Zahid Iqbal, at Shadab Colony in Faisalabad, when she was kidnapped in May.
After Mehwish did not return home for several days, her parents received a letter that included a copy of her marriage certificate with Iqbal. more >>
Qandeel Baloch, a Pakistani TV personality and model, was reported to have been strangled by one of her six brothers in a suspected honor killing on Saturday.
"Apparently the lady died of suffocation but final opinion on her death would be possible only after report of chemical examination comes," said Dr. Mushtaq Ahmed, one of the team who conducted Baloch's autopsy. "She might have been given some poisonous substance before being strangled."
Baloch became a household name for breaking away from the conservative Pakistani social norm by posting flirty videos and pictures of herself which is found to be normal among people in Western countries. more >>