Asia Bibi is still in Pakistan, waiting to leave the country 'safely'

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Asia Bibi is still in Pakistan, waiting to leave the country 'safely'

asianews.it and fides.org

Asia Bibi, the Christian mother released on Wednesday, November 7, from Multan prison, where she was brought following her acquittal from blasphemy charges, "is still in Pakistan. She is being kept in a secret location of maximum security. The family cannot see her.

This was revealed to AsiaNews by Joseph Nadeem, executive director of the Reinassance Education Foundation. The activist reiterates the "hope that Asia will soon leave the country in complete safety". Then he adds that "the family has still not been able to embrace her and we do not know her health conditions because we have not been allowed to see her".

Nadeem is in the company of Asia's husband, Ashiq Masih, and his two daughters, in a different location from the "maximum security" where the woman is kept. He denies the news reports of her release and that Asia is flying to a European country, perhaps the Netherlands that gave asylum to her defense lawyer Saif-ul-Muluk. Neither does he confirm the alleged involvement of the Amsterdam government in her liberation. "So far, nobody has given us any help," he adds.

For nine years in jail, seven of whom on death row in the Multan women's penitentiary, Asia Bibi was released last night. Islamic radicals had demanded she be given the death penalty, even after the verdict that absolved her from accusations of contempt of the Prophet Muhammad. They have blocked several cities with protests and violence in recent days.

The government, to avoid the escalation of the clashes, had signed an agreement with the radicals and accepted the revision of the Court's ruling. However, several experts on constitutional law have pointed out that the sentence could only be reviewed by the injured party.

"We are all happy - says Nadeem - for liberation. We thank the Lord for this blessing ". Then he concludes: "The government has not allowed us to meet her, but we hope we can do so soon. We trust in God's help so that he will guarantee to all of us a sure departure".

The Pontifical Mission Societies pro Asia Bibi
The Pontifical Mission Societies are involved in prayer and in raising awareness on the case of Asia Bibi. "Missio Aachen", directorate of the PMS in Aachen, asks the faithful for a special prayer for a woman sentenced to death in Pakistan and then acquitted by the crime of blasphemy on October 31st. "Missio" has promoted the initiative of a "sympathetic pillow": during the celebrations and meetings a chair will be left empty, with a pillow that shows a slogan for the release of Asia Bibi, to symbolize her presence and also the closeness the German faithful intend to express.

In his recent visit to Aachen, also Archbishop Giovanni Pietro Dal Toso, President of the Pontifical Mission Societies in the world, supported the initiative of solidarity towards the Pakistani woman. "Missio Aachen" invited Christians in Germany to pray intensely and to remember the woman during the liturgy and mass, hoping for a successful final outcome of the whole affair.

"With our action of prayer we want to symbolically bring Asia Bibi amongst us and pray for her freedom. Through our solidarity in prayer, all those who join can give Asia Bibi, her family and Christians in Pakistan strength", said Fr. Klaus Krämer, Director of "Missio Aachen". In 2014, Missio Aachen collected 18.425 signatures in a petition calling for Asia Bibi’s release, an innocent woman unjustly accused.

Tue, 11/06/2018 - 17:54
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