Asia Bibi, is a Pakistani Christian woman who was convicted of blasphemy by a Pakistani court, receiving a sentence of death by hanging. In June 2009, she was involved in an argument with a group of Muslim women with whom she had been harvesting berries after the other women became angry at her for drinking the same water as them. The woman considered the well defiled after Bibi drank from it because she was a Christian. She was subsequently accused of insulting the Islamic prophet Muhammad, a charge she denies, and was arrested and imprisoned. In November 2010, a Sheikhupura judge sentenced her to death. If executed, Bibi would be the first woman in Pakistan to be lawfully killed for blasphemy.
The verdict, which was reached in a district court and would need to be upheld by a superior court, has received worldwide attention. Multiple petitions have called for the charges against her to be dismissed. She received less sympathy from her neighbors and Islamic religious leaders in the country, some of whom adamantly called for her to be executed. Christian minorities minister Shahbaz Bhatti and Pakistani government politician Salmaan Taseer were both killed for advocating on her behalf and opposing the often misused blasphemy laws. Asia’s family has gone into hiding due to receiving death threats and has voiced concerns that she could be killed by extremists if released from prison.
Show your support for this Christian sister by writing a letter to give her encouragement to endure. And please remember to keep Asia and her family in your prayers.
Letters will be screened by Voice of the Persecuted advocates for Asia’s protection.