ASIA/PAKISTAN - Appeal to the Italian government to ask for "the repeal of the blasphemy law in Pakistan"

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Rome (Agenzia Fides) - An appeal to the Italian government comes from the Federation of Pakistani Associations in Italy: Adan Farhaj Bakhsh, president of the Federation, in a message sent to Fides, calls on the Italian government to intervene "and ask the Pakistani government for the repeal of the blasphemy law in Pakistan".
The appeal was launched thanks to a motion approved unanimously by the Regional Council of the Marche region. "The complaint of the President of the Federation, who has asked for our support, is clear. This law provides for the death penalty for those who fail to respect the Prophet Muhammad, and is often used for private purposes, attacking in particular religious minorities in Pakistan", said the motion, sent to Fides.
The approved text continues: "Freedom of speech and freedom of religion are a fundamental right of every individual: we cannot remain indifferent. 85% of the cases are false allegations of blasphemy. The Christian Sawan Masih is one of the latest victims of this law, sentenced to death for unjust accusations of blasphemy. The couple Shafqat and Shagufta Emmanuel (sentenced for a blasphemous SMS, Ed) and Asia Bibi are just some of those who are unjustly detained, on which weighs a death sentence for blasphemy. Every nation should raise their voice against these injustices and ask the Pakistani government for the release of imprisoned innocent people and the abolition of this unjust law that stifles the essence of freedom", said the motion. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 16/04/2014)