Asia Bibi is the Pakistani Christian mother who was falsely accused and imprisoned on death row for blasphemy against Islam. And who was eventually acquitted by Pakistan’s Supreme Court after spending almost a decade in prison.
But although she was found innocent of the charges, the Pakistani government is now not releasing her from prison because Islamists are rioting in the streets and are planning to publicly hang her.
After being in solitary confinement while in prison, now Asia Bibi’s life is in imminent danger upon her release from death row. This is because of the large number of serious death threats against her life and huge riots about her acquittal in Pakistan which is mostly Islamic.
Her release is delayed following protests by radical Islamists, who want her publicly hanged, amid failed talks between them and the government. It is not clear what the government is thinking or planning regarding Bibi.
A lawyer representing a local cleric who had raised the initial blasphemy charges against Bibi petitioned the supreme court on Thursday to reverse its acquittal.
Her husband, Ashiq Masih, returned from Britain with their children in mid-October and was waiting for her release so they could leave Pakistan since there are countries offering her asylum.
The Islamists are urging supporters to kill the three judges who acquitted Bibi, and to revolt against army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa and overthrow the newly elected government of Pakistan’s new prime minister, Imran Khan, who came to power partly by pursuing an Islamist agenda.
Islamists have taken to the streets holding rallies nationwide and threatening violence while schools and colleges have been closed.
Even though Asia Bibi was judged innocent, her release from prison seems anything but certain, and her fate is in peril unless she gets out of Pakistan.
Please pray for Asia Bibi, a Christian who is suffering continued persecution by Islam in Pakistan.
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