Wednesday, September 03, 2014


Pakistan

Pakistani President Seeks Report On Girl's Blasphemy Case

A boy holds a toy gun near the closed house of Rimsha, a Christian girl who has been arrested on blasphemy charges, in a slum area of Islamabad.
A boy holds a toy gun near the closed house of Rimsha, a Christian girl who has been arrested on blasphemy charges, in a slum area of Islamabad.
By RFE/RL
Pakistan's president has called on officials to explain the arrest on blasphemy charges of a Christian girl with Down syndrome.

The girl -- reportedly just 11 or 12 years old -- allegedly burned pages inscribed with verses from the Koran.

Police said the girl, Rimsha, was arrested in a Christian slum of Islamabad on August 16 and remanded in custody for 14 days.

A crowd of angry Muslims had demanded she be punished.

State-run media reports said President Asif Ali Zardari has taken "serious note" of the case and called on the Interior Ministry to submit a report.

Some reports suggested the girl had been burning papers collected from the rubbish for cooking when someone entered her house and accused the family of burning pages inscribed with verses from the Koran.

Rimsha's house was locked from the outside on August 20 and no one was at home, a reporter for the AFP news agency said. Neighbors were reluctant to speak about the incident, saying that they had not witnessed the alleged desecration themselves.

A senior official of the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance, Tahir Naveed Chaudhry, told AFP that Christians who fled for shelter with relatives elsewhere in Islamabad were now gradually returning to the slum called Mehrabad.

The girl has Down syndrome -- a condition which causes various degrees of learning difficulties -- and is not yet a teenager.

The Women's Action Forum, a leading Pakistani organization fighting for the rights of women, condemned Rimsha's arrest.

Spokeswoman Tahira Abdullah demanded her immediate release and expressed outrage at the "total inhumanity" of the men who lodged the case with police.

The 2011 assassinations of a leading Pakistani politician and a Christian cabinet minister have been linked to their public opposition to strict antiblasphemy laws. They had taken up the plight of a Christian mother sentenced to death for blasphemy in late 2010. She remains in prison.

The murders renewed concerns about religious intolerance in Pakistan, where minority groups have faced numerous attacks by militants of the Sunni Muslim majority.

Last month, a mob snatched a mentally unstable man from a village police station and beat him to death in central Punjab Province after he allegedly burned pages from a Koran.

Under the blasphemy laws, a conviction for defaming Islam or desecrating the Koran can be punishable by death.


With reporting by AP and AFP
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by: Bill Webb from: Phoenix Arizona USA
August 20, 2012 13:06
Blasphemy laws! These people just want to take it out on somebody for their miserable lives, the squalor and poverty they must live in. Their biggest problem is overpopulation, just like most of the rest of the world.
In Response

by: James from: Nebraska
August 21, 2012 00:56
We have people here who would institute identical laws for gays, blasphemers, and infidels right here in the USA. There are those waiting to tear the heart out of the First Amendment, separation of church and state, willingly. While overpopulation is certainly a problem, religion is what causes good people to do bad things, not poverty.
In Response

by: James from: the free world
August 21, 2012 09:11
"Religion" itself does not cause people to do bad things, religious fanatism can and does cause "good" people to do bad things
Usually because they are convinced by those controlling the religion to do so. Religion is actually blasphemy against the god most people say they believe in.
Fanaticism of any kind is ignorance on a high scale, this includes patriotism
"Patriots" are often blind and used by criminals to do horrible things just as other fanatics are
People need to throw off such ignorance and grow up: religious fanaticism and patriotism are for the weak and the cowardly
Basing your life, how you treat others etc on where you and they were born, what religion, colour etc you and they are is absolute ignorance

by: basdag from: belgium
August 20, 2012 17:03
These people are monsters, the lowest of the lowest.

by: RN from: Florida
August 20, 2012 20:35
"A crowd of angry Muslims" demanded she be punished...were there ANY women in that crowd or just ALL men? What kind of a religion desires to injure and offend for burning papers in order to cook? How does anyone REALLY know it was pages of the Koran? The "neighbors" are obviously intimidated by their own people and thus -they - allegedly don't know what happened. What a trumped up charge on a 11-12 year old girl who has a severe developmental disability!

by: Aghaji from: Canada
August 20, 2012 21:24
It is absolutely ridiculous to lodge a blasphemy complaint and arrest an 11 years old little girl with down syndrome. The people who did it are uncouth ,barbarian yahoos. They are living in Jahelia -- the period in Arabia before the holy prophet. If the prophet were to come alive today and witnessed this witch hunt he would be horrified.

by: K.SebastianBreck from: Berlin
August 20, 2012 22:08
The analytic term is not 'defaming' but criticizing; the analytic term is not 'desecrating' but burning.

By using the vocabulary of 'defamation' & 'desecration', you cede that Islam does not deserve its critics, & that the Koran is holy. Many take these things to be so, & they happen to be wrong. But regardless, they are not 'facts'.

Calling Muhammad a murderer is not 'defamation', & burning a Koran is not 'desecration' -- it's history, & protest. Assuming the 'Muhammad' you refer to is Islam's putative protest, & the Koran you burn is your property.

by: Demetrius Minneapolis from: My House
August 20, 2012 22:22
I have said it thousands of times, but once more cannot hurt : Islam is NOT a religion. It is a societal control, a means to contain a populace.

If you were to read both qur'ans, the Mecca version and the Medina version, you would see how they in one moment claim Islam is about peace and religion and in the next are shouting jihad and look to slay their first Hindu or Christian if you prefer.

by: Shant from: Can Aurora
August 22, 2012 10:19
it's all about where you start forma nd who you belong to if you have Jesus Christ in your heart you've a free angel.. alot of people including those muslims in that girls town are obviosly confused and have no idea why or what they're doing to her or even to them selves.. alot of flames for alot games when it comes to God. the thing people will reacte diferently but when it comes to an 11-12 yr old shes got a mental desease how can anyone normal treat her the way they are.. blasphemy charges against her which are outraguosly untrue.. makes no sense.. they are who blaspheme against her free rights to speak and be free! no? ofkorse when you are a muslim yout think differently maybe sidways. people will lie to score points will allah some god still hiding everytime his name is said lol.. has anyone read numericals 1-2-3 thats how stupid this case against her is.. she actually did well by using paper to cook.. but the koran oh com'on,, why use that it s HOLY BOOK,, and wait,, it does talk about killing those who reject it and waging wars on countries who deny its allah... u - know i know she didnt burn the pages of the koran ... as in the girl they ILLEGALLY PUT INTO PRISON BUT... GUESS WHAT.. I WOULD! LOL

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