Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Pakistan will not repeal blasphemy law, as it might fuel Islamic militancy – govt minister


“(Repeal) is not being considered though we are considering changing it so that misuse of the law should be stopped,” Bhatti. The law enjoys widespread support in Pakistan, and politicians are loathe to be seen as soft on the defense of the religion.


In Europe and so on, it had become common to hear, if we do this or that ~ it will upset the Muslim extremists. Once you give in to this, then you are saying ~ they are in control. That the militant jihadists have the last say.

But in Paksitan with the blasphemy laws ~ I don't think Islamic militants are the problem ~ as with blasphemy laws the militants are still bombing them. However in trying to be a country that represents Islam ~ next only to Saudi Arabia ~ Pakistan has allowed fundamentalist extremism amongst the ordinary citizen and they do this by promoting not only Islam but more significantly its followers as being above all others. In that Muslims are superior. And the laws and Constitution backs this up.

This is not the first time they said they were going to have a look at those blasphemy laws. Don't hold your breath.



Pakistan will not repeal its controversial blasphemy law but may amend it to prevent abuse because scrapping the legislation could fuel Islamist militancy, a government minister said on Tuesday.

The law, which carries the death penalty for insulting Islam or its Prophet Mohammad, has come under the spotlight this month after a court sentenced a Christian mother of four, Asia Bibi, to death in a case stemming from a village dispute.

Widespread media attention on the case has led to renewed appeals by human rights groups for the repeal of the law but Minister for Minorities Shahbaz Bhatti said that would not happen.

“(Repeal) is not being considered though we are considering changing it so that misuse of the law should be stopped,” Bhatti told Reuters. The law enjoys widespread support in Pakistan, which is more than 95 percent Muslim, and politicians are loathe to be seen as soft on the defense of the religion.

Blasphemy convictions are common although the death sentence has never been carried out. Most convictions are thrown out on appeal, but angry mobs have killed many people accused of blasphemy.

Bhatti said consultations with Islamic clerics and representatives of religious minorities on amending the law would soon be held. He said repealing it was not being considered because that could provoke religious parties and militants who want to topple the pro-U.S civilian government.

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