Pakistan Court Overturns Blasphemy Conviction, Death Sentence
Religion Today Religious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
- 2013 Apr 05
A Pakistan court this week threw out the 2007 conviction of a Christian man sentenced to death for offending Islam, World Watch Monitor reports. Younis Masih is at least the second Christian accused of blasphemy that Pakistani judges have exonerated since the country's Supreme Court threw out a high-profile blasphemy case against a teenaged girl that drew worldwide attention. On Wednesday, an appeals court in Lahore announced it had acquitted Masih of the blasphemy charge, which arose from an argument during an interfaith meeting in September 2005. The decision came five weeks after Masih's attorney, civil rights advocate Naeem Shakir, presented evidence during a two-day hearing that the 2007 conviction was based on hearsay. Though now a free man, Masih, 42, remained in Central Jail Mianwali on Wednesday as his advocates considered how and where to safely return him to his family and to open Pakistani society.