Christian woman Asia Bibi still remains in prison five years after she was sentenced to hang for blasphemy. But your support for her plight will increase pressure on the authorities in Pakistan and could help to set her free.
She was condemned to death in November 2010 after being convicted of insulting the Muslim prophet Mohammed during a heated conversation with Muslim co-workers over drinking water.
The mother-of-five was picking fruit in the fields when some Muslim co-workers refused to drink from the same vessel as her, saying the water was “unclean. It was alleged that in the response to attacks on her faith she replied: “I believe in my religion and in Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for the sins of mankind. What did your prophet Mohammed ever do to save mankind?”
Asia Bibi denies blasphemy or intending any disrespect to the Muslim prophet but a summary trial at the court in Sheikhupura found her guilty and sentenced her to death.
The sentence is obviously unjust, which is why we are calling ACN’s supporters to add their weight behind a petition to quash her sentence.
Hopes her conviction might have been overturned or commuted were shattered in October 2014 when the High Court in Lahore upheld her death sentence. But the campaign to secure her release continues.
Wilson Chowdhry, chairman of the British Pakistani Christian Association, has encouraged everyone to support the initiative to free Asia Bibi. He said: “We urge Christians to sign this petition to save the life of one of Pakistan’s most famous prisoners. Asia Bibi has suffered beatings, rape, and her children being molested before her very eyes, yet it is her that has languished in prison for five years?”
We only need a few votes more votes to ensure that this is debated in the House of Commons.
Wilson added: “Please help this mother of five who is sorely missed by her family. The blasphemy law of Pakistan is a dangerous tool in the hands of land mafia and extremists, your signature could not only save Asia but potentially millions of other Christians in Pakistan also.”
Please pray for her – and please sign the petition to free Asia Bibi.
For more on the story, read the BBC’s article here.