AFP: Pakistan court sentences man to death for blasphemy


Via Sheffield Humanists

CHITRAL, Pakistan — A Pakistani court has condemned a man to death for blasphemy, believed to be the first such sentence given under the country’s tough laws against insulting Islam since a Christian woman in 2010

Hazrat Ali Shah, 25, was convicted of blaspheming against the Muslim Prophet Mohammed and the Koran during a quarrel in his village in northern Pakistan in March 2011.

Blasphemy is an extremely sensitive issue in Pakistan, where 97 percent of the population are Muslims, and under the country’s penal code insulting the Prophet Mohammed can be punished by death.

“The additional session judge Azar Khan has passed a sentence on him (Shah) of capital punishment and imprisonment for 10 years under the charges of blasphemy,” Syed Zamurd Shah, the district and session judge in the northern city of Chitral, told AFP.

He said that the sentence was announced on Wednesday after people from the village gave evidence against Shah.

The death penalty was added to the blasphemy law under Islamist military dictator General Zia-ul Haq in 1986 but as yet no-one has been executed for the crime.

Written By: AFP – google news
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  1. That these things happen in Pakistan should not surprise us at this stage. Pakistan is a country where anything can happen when you least expect it. In any country weird things can happen, but Pakistan takes the cake. It must be a nightmare to live in that country… …and in Saudi Arbia of course. I hope that UNO will do something for that poor man.

  2. Omnipotent Allah can bear a cosmos with hundreds of billions of galaxies and orchestrate every event that transpires within them, but the moment a lowly Homosapien makes an off-colour remark about him, he’s reduced to a sulking, suspiciously anthropomorphic infant who needs to use said lowly Homo sapiens like pawns to carry out his dirty work for him. Uh huh.

    I’m hoping there’s some way to save Hazrat from this most primal form of stupidity.

  3. “The additional session judge Azar Khan has passed a sentence on him (Shah) of capital punishment and imprisonment for 10 years under the charges of blasphemy,”

    So… will they kill him before or after they keep him in the cooler for 10 years?

  4. Yes, agreed.  Do they realise how small we are compared to the earth; and how small the earth is compared to the sun; and how small the sun is compared to the largest object so far found in the universe?  I mean, in physical terms, we’re less than a pixel – virtually insignificant.  And this allah entity wants us to suck up to it???

  5. Where is the original article?

    I would like to read an original article before I start my rant.

  6. A Nuclear Power mixed with religion. Hey we “USA” have that mix also! Can you say secular society – Please ?!?

  7. Can you say “sophistry”? Point to a separation of church and state clause in any of Pakistan’s founding documents. Point to a death sentence for blasphemy in the USA since its founding. I agree, prevalent religious belief coupled with apocalyptic weaponry is a terrifying thing, but comparing the United States to Pakistan on governance, stability and nuclear safeguards is shallow at best.

  8. Pakistan, like Saudi Arabia, is one of the most backward countries in the world with one of the most backward belief systems.

  9. Obviously they will kill him and put him in a padlocked coffin for 10 years! If you live in the stone-age shithole that is Pakistan it will all make sense.Also if anyone wants some background history on how Pakistan got to be so well supported by the U.S. read Hitchens’s ‘The trial of Henry Kissinger’ ! 

  10. I knew there would have had to be an argument before I got to that bit. Accusations of blasphemy or homosexuality are commonly used in backward countries where the penalty is hugely severe.

    Just don’t upset your neighbours or you are toast.

  11.  You’d imagine that if any god existed then he,she or it would expect the intelligence it gave  to its created beings would be used to question, criticise or even mock the religion its beings subsequently created to support the god figure they worship and love ( or live in fear of ). But I guess in Pakistan they are just so scared that they might find cracks in their primitive crutch by questioning anything , though they’ll quite happily embrace modern technology such as computers and mobile phones etc. But I think it’ll take a lot of lives before that crack gets big enough. And this poor unfortunate soul is just another victim of outdated thought and lack of open education.

  12. There is also an article in the Pakistan Tribune

    One of the comments under the article states that Muslims believe that Mohammed’s word on God was final and nobody can later claim to have received any updated messages from God that would overule anything.

    I continue to find it astonishing that people can be intelligent enough to construct basic sentences and communicate on the internet, yet be so unbelievably stupid to fall for such an obvious scam.

  13.  So a ready made excuse direct from Allah via his emissary Mohammed to do exactly as you please in god’s name. They have all the bases covered don’t they. I am still waiting for the reaction of the UK’s ” moderate” Muslim community. I wonder what convoluted  justification for this act of barbarity they will come up with ?

    How, for example, will they criticise the decision of the court and remain true to their Koran.

  14. Islam is nothing more than the glorification of arabic culture with some added misogyny and hate thrown in for good measure. Why do you think theyd want to live life any differently?

  15. Not unlike multiple death sentences and multi century imprisonment elsewhere, the death penalty and prison term come from different convictions – death
    for the words about the prophet, ten years of rigorous imprisonment (with hard labour) for
    hurting his audience’s feelings. The fine is applicable to on both counts, we would not want judging blasphemers to be a profitless endeavour, would we?

  16. 97% of the population is too insecure to have someone disagree with them. Fucking children.

  17. Yes , my comparison was over the top with that, I agree. As far as US religious history one does not have to dig to far back – as when the church had god on its side for one to find horrific punishment and death imposed on desenters. Laws? The church made them up as they saw fit. Thank You for your input.

  18. Yes, but are we talking about the church/religion or about nuclear-armed nation states? You’re preaching to the converted when you argue that religions behave badly when they have worldly power. The fact is, religion has power in Pakistan and a government that is uninsulated from it and complicit in it. In the United States, people who profess religious beliefs have power, but their government is insulated against religious influence AND has mechanisms to ensure against it.

    If you have a particular case of church-sponsored, state-enacted capital punishment (or even a sentence) from the United States in mind, I’d be fascinated to hear about it. And I’m probably coming across as quite rude; I apologise for that, I just can’t stand it when people draw false equivalences.

    And thank you for your input, too.

  19. No, I do not have state/church example (yet) to refer you to. We or (I) were not on the same page. Thank you for your reply and I appreciate your criticism of my original post.

  20.  I don’t think it’s so shallow. At all. You had Bush saying he was fighting a Holy war re: Iraq, you have seriously eroding rights, you have racism, you have religious fundamentalism in politics, and you have a military-industrial based economy, and a general attitude – internationally – that you are better than everyone and listen to nobody if you don’t want to. In other words, a bully.

    Do you remember how scary it was seeing the PNAC start to unfold, with a major part of that to destabilize the middle east by starting regional wars, infuse troops and bases, and use tactical nukes if necessary.

    You are massing for a war with Iran, you play chicken with these nations forcing them to react and do their own sabre rattling and this attitude by the US degrades and escalates these situations.

    Then, you have so much propaganda in the US that many – most? – are spoon fed exaggerations and demonizations of these other countries, which turns into widespread support of military diplomacy.

    The US is one of the most fucked up countries to have so much military power it is very scary to the rest of the world. If anyone is going to precipitate a nuclear and/or world war, or destroy our way and ease of living , it is the backwardness of the U.S.

    Sure, you don’t have executions for blasphemy – yet – but you have death sentences for pregnant women, extremism in politics, extreme corruption in politics, amoral leadership, an lot’s more.

    You are more like Pakistan than not, but you are far more dangerous to the rest of us. I don’t speak for everyone, of course, but you better slow down before you go patting yourselves on the back for being so ‘advanced’ societally.

    The U.S. is certainly the most fanatically religious and stunted of the developed nations, make no mistake of that.

  21. Islamic countries must be like a theological jumanji. Once you’re in you’re fucked.

    At least xtians on the whole are open to argument.  Try and tell a muslim he’s wrong and his answer is to try and kill you (licensed by allah).  Thank fuck they haven’t copied the jehovah’s witnesses and started knocking doors.

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