Pakistani Christian, facing blasphemy charge, killed in prison
September 15, 2009
A Pakistani Christian man who was arrested on blasphemy charges was found dead in prison on September 15, apparently having been tortured. His death was denounced by a human-rights group as an example of "judicial murder." After the young man was arrested and charged with desecrating the Qu'ran, Muslim activists in his Punjab village attacked Christian homes and set fire to a local church.
Christians claim that the blasphemy charge was unfounded, and that in fact the young man was targeted for punishment after he quarreled with a Muslim girlfriend. Christians in Pakistan have frequently complained that the country's blasphemy laws are regularly used by the Islamic majority as a means of intimidating and punishing the minority Christians.