Asia Bibi Finally Free and Out of Pakistan
Asia Bibi has finally been allowed to leave Pakistan – six months after she was acquitted of ‘blasphemy’ and her life sentence quashed.
She has arrived in Canada, where two of her daughters have already been granted asylum, her lawyer told CNN.
Praise God that Asia’s ten-year ordeal is finally over!
Asia has spent the past six months in protective custody, unable to leave Pakistan, amid death threats from extremists. After her acquittal at the Supreme Court on October 31, thousands took to the streets demanding she be killed and calling for the overthrow of the Government.
Her nightmare began in June 2009 when she was charged with blasphemy after sharing a cup of water with her co-workers on a farm in Punjab. They called her unclean because she was a Christian.
- Thank God that He has made a way for Asia to be released and reunited with her family. Ask Him to protect them all as they build a new life overseas.
- Please continue to pray that Pakistan will repeal its blasphemy laws, even though Prime Minister Imran Khan has pledged to defend them. Pray that the influence of hardliners will begin to subside: the Tehreek-e-Labbaik party (TLP) is demanding the death penalty for blasphemers.
- Pray for the 218 Christians in Pakistan who are behind bars for blasphemy, including Zafar Bhatti (see below), according to Release partners. Pray that their cases will now be reviewed.
(Sources: BBC, CNN, The Guardian)
Please continue to pray for our brothers and sisters in Sri Lanka, still coming to terms with the devastating losses they suffered during the Easter Sunday bomb attacks. The country has been on high alert amid warnings that Islamist bombers may be planning further attacks. It has recently emerged that among the 257 people who died were 14 Sunday school children from Zion Evangelical Church in Batticaloa. Our partners, who are caring for survivors, say that Christians have responded positively to calls for forgiveness and reconciliation. (Source: Release partners)
Pray for our brother in Pakistan, Zafar Bhatti, who is still waiting for a ruling on his appeal against a blasphemy conviction. The next hearing is scheduled for June 19: pray that Zafar will be acquitted. He has spent seven years in jail and is in poor health. (Source: Release partners)