Brutal Murder of Ashiq Nabi by the Mob for Blasphemy in Pakistan: Appeal for Justice and the Abolition of Blasphemy Law sign now

Recently in Nowshera District in Pakistan, a man named Ashiq Nabi (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/4466341.stm), was brutally murdered for the unproven allegation of blasphemy by an angry mob following a rumor that he had damaged a copy of the Quran deliberately. As the rumor spread rapidly, a 400-plus village mob chased Mr. Nabi through the fields, who finally sought refuge up on a tree where he was shot dead by someone in the mob. This is one of many frequent cases of murder for those accused of blasphemy inthe IslamicRepublic of Pakistan.

Many people, mostly from minority religions, are often jailed in Pakistan on charges of blasphemy. Sentencing to death for blasphemy is not uncommon in Pakistan; the most well-known case being that of Dr. Younis Sheikh, who was ultimately acquitted because of intense international pressure. Dr Sheikh, still in fear for his life, has now taken refuge in a Western country. However, people accused of blasphemy, are often murdered by religious mob, who believe it to be their religious duty as Muslims to kill those who desert or disrespect Islam. Indeed, death for blasphemy is common to all over the Muslims world. The case of Salman Rushdie and Taslima Nasrin (Bangladesh), who are under Islamic rogue justice called fatwa and currently hiding in Western countries, are just a few well-known cases. Also recently Prof. Humayun Azad of Bangladesh (http://www.mukto-mona.com/Articles/humayun_azad/humayun_azad_dhormanubhuti.htm) was fatally assaulted by Islamic zealots for allegedly defaming Islam in his book, who finally died in Germany on 11 August, 2004.

Historically, Muslims have killed those who desert Islam (apostates) as well as those who deny the words of Prophet Muhammad or the content of Quran as divine truth. This brutal custom of killing theblasphemers was started by the Prophet Muhammad himself in the 7th century and continues even till today in the Muslims countries. Passages in the Ahadiths/Sunnah (actions and sayings of Prophet Muhammad: Sahih Bukhari 4:52:260, 5:59:369 etc.) recorded Prophet Muhammad ordering to kill those who disrespected or deserted Islam.

Sahih Bukhari 4:52:260:
Narrated Ikrima:
Ali burnt some people and this news reached Ibn 'Abbas, who said, "Had I been in his place I would not have burnt them, as the Prophet said, 'Don't punish (anybody) with Allah's Punishment. 'No doubt, I would have killed them, for the Prophet said, 'If somebody (a Muslim) discards his religion, kill him.'

Sahih Bukhari 5:59:369:
Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah:
Allah's Apostle said, "Who is willing to kill Ka'b bin Al-Ashraf who has hurt Allah and His Apostle?" Thereupon Muhammad bin Maslama got up saying, "O Allah's Apostle! Would you like that I kill him?" The Prophet said, "Yes,"

The Quran also contains verses that sanction killing of the disbelievers or deserters of Islam (Quran 4:89, 9:12, 33:15-16, 33:60-61). For example:
They long that ye should disbelieve even as they disbelieve, that ye may be upon a level (with them). So choose not friends from them till they forsake their homes in the way of Allah; if they turn back (to enmity) then take them and kill them wherever ye find them, and choose no friend, nor helper from among them." [Quran 4:89]

This ideaof murdering those, who express opinions opposing or disrespecting any religion or prophet, is a vestige of the medieval barbaric traditions that has no place in todays modern world of excellence in human rights and dignity where fundamental human rights must be assured to people in every country of the world. Articles 18 and 19 of the United Nations Declaration of Universal Human Rights guarantee the freedom of choosing, practicing and preaching ones religion and belief as well as freedom of expression of ones opinion without interference or fear. The blasphemy penal law, which carries penalty as severe as death, is in outright contravention of UNs Declaration of Universal Human Rights and is barbaric and unacceptable today.

We, the members of Vinnomot (www.vinnomot.com, an internet congregation of Bengali and international mix) feel that such barbaric and cruel laws should not exist anywhere in the world and should be abolished without delay. We also express concern about the passages in the holy Quran and Ahadiths/Sunnah which frequently incite the religious Muslims to take justice in their own hands, even in countries without blasphemy laws, resulting in the unfortunate murder and torture of the so-called blasphemers. Even in the Western countries, despite being a minority, zealot Muslims and Imams routinely calls for death of the alleged blasphemers

We appeal to the President of Pakistan to take stern actions against those responsible for the barbaric murder of Ashiq Nabi and we plead with him to take immediate steps to repeal this barbaric blasphemy law which contravenes the universal human rights. We also appeal to Governments and the religious authorities of the Muslim nations to look into the religious text which spontaneously instigate the general public to mob justice to kill and torture the alleged blasphemers. Unless the religious basis of such brutal acts are properly interpreted or edited, the devout religious Muslims would continue to resort to such cruel rogue justice.

We also appeal to the United Nations to take her Declaration of Universal Human Rights seriously and work with or pressurize (if needed) member Governments to abolish such uncivilized criminal laws, including their religious bases.

We also appeal to those, who value life, human rights and human dignity, to sign this petition so as to raise your voice and conscience against such unacceptable and barbaric cruelty that still exists in our civilized world.

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Mariana AbbottBy:
TelecommunicationsIn:
Petition target:
President of Pakistan, Governments of the Muslims Countries, UN Commission for Human Rights

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