ASIA/PAKISTAN - "It is in the interest of the institutions that Asia Bibi is acquitted"

Wednesday, 12 October 2016 blasphemy   islam   justice   politics   religious minorities   human rights  

Islamabad (Agenzia Fides) - "We are confident and hope in the acquittal of Asia Bibi. Having consulted expert lawyers in Pakistan, it is clear that the case has faults both regarding merits, in terms of evidence, and at a procedural level. The Supreme Court will recognize these faults without problems": says to Agenzia Fides Fr. Robert McCulloch, today Procurator general of the Society of St. Columban and for over 30 years a missionary in Pakistan, on the eve of the case of Asia Bibi in front of the Supreme Court, on October 13. The Australian religious considers and inscribes the case of the Christian woman sentenced to death for alleged blasphemy in the broader context of the issue of the "blasphemy law".
"This bill is a heavy baggage left by a dictator, that the Pakistani government inherited. The government has initiated a discussion in Parliament to correct it in order to prevent the abuses that many Pakistani citizens, Muslims, Christians and Hindus suffer. International support to the Pakistani government may be important.
The blasphemy law, as it is in force today, is detrimental to the country's international reputation: it is therefore in the interest of the government to intervene".
In this light, and in this framework, "the case of Asia Bibi, represents an opportunity for the judiciary and the government: it is in the interest of Pakistani institutions that Asia is acquitted, in order to show the world that Pakistan respects the rule of law, human rights, religious freedom. This will improve the international image of the country: a very important fact today, at a time when also the crisis of Kashmir, on the Indian border is addressed, with all international repercussions". (PA) (Agenzia Fides 12/10/2016)