The Latest: Pakistan postpones ruling on Christian woman
ISLAMABAD (AP) — The Latest on the hearing before Pakistan’s Supreme Court on the final appeal of Christian woman on death row for blasphemy (all times local):
Pakistan’s Supreme Court has postponed its ruling on a final appeal by a Christian woman on death row since 2010 on charges of blasphemy.
The judicial panel listened to Asia Bibi’s defense lawyer challenge statements by those who accused her of insulting Islam’s prophet, an allegation that can incite riots in conservative Pakistan.
The charge dates back to 2009 when Bibi went to get water for her and her fellow farmworkers. Two Muslim women refused to take a drink from a container used by a Christian. A few days later, a mob accused her of blasphemy. She was convicted and sentenced to death.
The three-judge panel led by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar did not indicate on Monday when the court would announce its ruling.
Pakistan’s Supreme Court is set to hear the final appeal of a Christian on death row since 2010 accused of insulting Islam’s prophet, a crime that incites mobs to kill and carries an automatic death penalty.
Her lawyer Saif-ul Malook told The Associated Press he is optimistic that Aasia Bibi will win Monday’s appeal. But if not, he will seek a review, which could take years to complete.
On a hot day in 2009, Bibi went to get water for her and her fellow farmworkers. After she took a sip, some of the Muslim women became angry that a Christian had drunk from the same container. They demanded she convert, she refused. Five days later, a mob accused her of blasphemy. She was convicted and sentenced to death.