Tahir Naseem killing: America asks Pakistan to reform blasphemy laws

Tahir Naseem killing: America asks Pakistan to reform blasphemy laws

"Naseem, 47, died on the place just after he was shot at six times inside Peshawar" s significant-protection Judicial Intricate on Wednesday although he awaited to be shifted to prison.

A first information report (FIR) was registered against the under-trial prisoner in a local police station of Peshawar in 2018. The attacker, Khalid, who reportedly screamed "Enemy of Islam" just before shooting, was arrested and the pistol applied in the killing was seized. "(The suspect) has been arrested from the scene".

The United States on Thursday demanded action over the killing of a USA citizen inside a Pakistani court as he faced blasphemy charges, saying it had warned Islamabad about his safety.

Naseem, an Ahmedia, was an American citizen who lived in the U.S. before he was first arrested in April 2018 after a local accused him of blasphemy by one Awais Malik, a madrasa student from Peshawar.

"Pakistan's blasphemy laws are indefensible, to begin with, but it is outrageous beyond belief that the Pakistani government was incapable of keeping an individual from being murdered within a court of law for his faith, and a US citizen, nonetheless", said United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) Commissioner Johnnie Moore in a statement.

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In a tweet, Jamaat-i-Ahmadiyya Pakistan spokesperson Saleemuddin confirmed the deceased was born into the sect but abandoned it years ago.

Pakistan's controversial blasphemy law carries an automatic death penalty for anyone convicted of insulting God, Islam, or other religious figures.

Global human rights groups have widely condemned the law, which critics say is disproportionately used against minority religious groups and to persecute journalists critical of the Pakistani religious establishment.

Supporters, however, believe the absence of such laws would foment religious violence. A case related to blasphemy was going on in the court during the incident.

In a landmark 2018 judgment, the country's Supreme Court acquitted a Christian woman, Asia Bibi, of blasphemy charges after she spent eight years on death row in a case that drew global attention. Bibi was acquitted after spending eight years on death row in a case that drew worldwide attention. Faced with death threats from Islamic extremists upon her release, she flew to Canada to join her daughters previous year.

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