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Pakistani Man Sentenced To Death For Blasphemy

A court in Pakistan has sentenced to death a man convicted under the country's controversial antiblasphemy laws.

Muhammad Zulfikar, 50, was arrested in 2008 after some people in the eastern city of Lahore accused him of writing sentences on a wall that insulted the Prophet Muhammad.

Zulfikar's defense lawyer said a court in Lahore on July 15 sentenced Zulfikar to death, rejecting a plea that he was mentally ill.

Pakistan has strict laws against insulting Islam, which can sometimes carry the death penalty.

Rights activists say Pakistan's antiblasphemy laws are often misused to settle personal disputes.

A recent report from a U.S. government advisory panel listed 14 people on death row and 19 serving life sentences in Pakistan for insulting Islam.

Based on reporting by AFP and dpa

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