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“All human beings are born free and equal

in dignity and rights.”

- Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Asia Bibi


Detained: June 19, 2009

Charges: Blasphemy

Sentence: Death penalty. Overturned.

Biography: Asia Bibi is a Catholic mother of five and was a farmhand from the village of Ittan Wali in Sheikhupura District of Punjab province.  In June 2009, an argument arose with her fellow labors over whether the water she brought was “unclean” because she was Christian and they Muslim.  Later coworkers complained to a cleric that Bibi made derogatory comments about Prophet Muhammad.  Police investigated her remarks, which resulted in her arrest and prosecution under Section 295 C of the Pakistan Penal Code for blasphemy.  She spent more than a year in jail. On November 8, 2010, a district court in Nankana Sahib, Punjab, sentenced her to death for blasphemy, the first such sentence for blasphemy handed down against a woman.  The death penalty is permissible under Pakistani law.  On October 16, 2014, the Lahore High Court dismissed her appeal and upheld her death sentence. However, Pakistan's Supreme Court overturned Asia's death sentence on October 31, 2018. She was released from prison on November 7.

Advocate: Rep. Joseph Pitts (R-PA, Ret.)

Asia Bibi has been RELEASED.