Pakistani Christian Couple Sentenced to Death for 'Blasphemy'

Monday, April 7, 2014 | Tag Cloud Tags: ,

By Joseph DeCaro

ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN (Worthy News)-- A Christian couple in Pakistan's Punjab Province was sentenced to death Friday for allegedly sending blasphemous text messages, according to Morning Star News.

The sentencing of Shafqat and Shugufta Emmanuel came only one week after a court in Lahore had sentenced Sawan Masih to death for allegedly insulting Islam's prophet during a drunken conversation with a Muslim friend. All three Christians join Asia Bibi, a Christian mother who was sentenced to death for an alleged blasphemy back in November 2010, yet still remains on death row.

Emmanuel and his wife were both accused of sending blasphemous text messages last June from a number allegedly registered in his name. The Gojra City Police in Punjab charged the couple with blasphemy under Sections 295-B: insulting the Koran, which is punishable by life imprisonment and 295-C: insulting Muhammad, which is punishable by death.

The Emmanuel's lawyer, Nadeem Hassan, said that in order to appease the mobs led by Islamist clerics, police forced Shafqat Emmanuel -- who is confined to a wheelchair from a spinal injury -- to confess to having sentt the blasphemous messages.

"The police tortured Shafqat to confess before a judicial magistrate, but the crippled man retracted his statement when we requested the session judge to record his statement again," he said.

Hassan -- who had told the court that his clients couldn't possibly have written the alleged texts written in Roman Urdu as they couldn't read or write proper Urdu -- said he would challenge the verdict in High Court.

Farrukh Harrison, of the Christian advocacy group World Vision in Progress, told Morning Star News that his group had protested the court’s bias from the trial's beginning.

"Judge Habib simply refused to accept our submissions regarding insufficient evidence presented by the prosecution," Harrison said.

Harrison also questioned why the judge had given the death sentence to both the husband and wife even though they had forced a confession from only Shafqat.

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3 thoughts on “Pakistani Christian Couple Sentenced to Death for 'Blasphemy'”

  1. To evolutionists, humans are monkeys and all humanity as far as I am concerned is a zoo. Give mankind the levity to pursue it's inner most desires and Islam will look like a benevolent society.The Bible said this would occur. We must pray for the persecuted brothers and sisters but also praise God that the gospel is going out to these hardened nations. We must remind ourselves in the West that living in faith to Christ does not mean we end up with Governments making favourable laws towards Christians. It is rather being content no matter what circumstance we find our self in, let us pray that many come to Christ, and through this maybe God would will Governments make more favorable laws ... but then the risk is falling asleep under comfort and safety. If one would wish to give an attribute to Islam the correct Biblical one is locust or grasshoppers, not monkeys. See Rev 9 and Judges 7:12.
    The Bedowins have a poem called "The Romance of Antar" in it, it says
    "the Locust is the symbol of the Arabs and the Arabs are the Ishmaelites."

    In the Hadiths Locust fell onto Muhammads hand and the wings of the locust had
    written on them "We are the army of the great god."

  2. Mushtaq Dean (Comment on article)

    Murder of Christian couple in Pakistan

    The report of murder of Christian couple, labor at brick kiln, by unruly crowd has been circulated worldwide through national and international print and electronic media. The incident is said to be a result of blasphemous act that the couple had committed.

    It is grumbled that the blasphemous act, in many cases, is misused by powerful and influential persons when they want to settle their account with their foes who happen to be weak and feebly settled in society.

    The affected rather ruined family is grateful to those who shared with them their irreparable loss through words of sympathy. The message becomes more comforting, solicitous and consoling when we see it coming from a distinguished people including Ex-president Zardari, MQM chief Altaf Hussain, Chief of Islamic Counsil Moulana Tahir Ashrafi, MNAS, MPAS and many other renowned Islamic scholars.

    Thankfully, in such a disastrous situation, we have a sensitive and responsible government. Chief Minister, Shahbaz Shrif, reputed for his alertness towards the administration, went into spontaneous action. He has established a high powered inquiring squad, has granted prodigious amount of money for the distressed folks.

    Such timely, caring and generous attitude will not sooth the wounds of wounded only but also win applause and admiration from all quarters, in particular from the minorities.

    Prime Minister, Mr Nawaz Shrif, is equally watchful of the incident taking keen interest. Many anxiously waiting for the outcome of the inquiry wishing the result to be full of retribution for the criminals.

    Mushtaq Dean

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