Thu, Feb 23, 2017 | updated 05:09 PM IST

US expresses concern over rising blasphemy cases in Pak

Updated: Aug 12, 2016 12:43 IST
Karachi, Aug. 12 (ANI): The U.S. State Department's annual report on International Religious Freedom has expressed concern at the increase in the number of blasphemy cases in Pakistan and the use of such charges as "justification for mob justice" in the country.

The report pointed out that the armed sectarian groups connected to banned terror organisations continued to stage attacks on Christians and Shias, including the predominantly Shia Hazara community, reports the Express Tribune.

It added that incidents of forced conversions have also continued.

The reports which was released on Wednesday report takes a comprehensive look at the situation in more than 200 countries in 2015.

Noting that several individuals were arrested by the police on charges of blasphemy, it said that that numerous individuals involved in well-publicised blasphemy cases from previous years including Sawan Masih, Shafqat Emmanuel, Shagufta Kausar, and Liaquat Ali remained in jail awaiting appeal.

The reports also quoted data provided by civil society organisations, saying three new cases under the blasphemy laws were registered during 2015, down from 12 cases in 2014.

It added that, as per the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), more than 40 people remain on death row for blasphemy in Pakistan.(ANI)

New York [USA], Feb. 23 (ANI): Malaysia has asked Interpol to put out an alert for four missing North Korean suspects wanted in connection with the death of Kim Jong Nam, the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, police said Thursday.

Full Story >>

New Delhi [India], Feb. 23 (ANI): The latest International Student Survey has shown a record 10 per cent surge in the number of international students coming to Australia to 5,54,179.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb 23 (ANI): Pakistan's Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has arrested the Director General of National Database and Regulatory Authority (NADRA), Tahir Akram, over corruption charges.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb. 23 (ANI): The Pakistan Supreme Court (SC) today reserved its verdict on the Panama Leaks case and stated that a verdict would be announced at a later date.

Full Story >>

Lahore [Pakistan], Feb 23 (ANI): At least eight people have been killed and several others injured after a powerful explosion rocked an under-construction building in Lahore's busy Defence Y block area.

Full Story >>

Four killed, six injured in Lahore blast

Updated: Feb 23, 2017 13:07 IST

Lahore [Pakistan], Feb 23. (ANI): At least four persons were killed and six others injured after an explosion in Lahore's DHA Z-Block.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb. 23 (ANI): Pakistan and Iran have agreed that the Border Security Commission of the two countries will meet soon to ensure that terrorists and smugglers are not able to operate from each other's territories.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb. 23 (ANI): Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif arrived at the Esenboga Airport in Ankara on a three day official visit to Turkey.

Full Story >>

Kampala (Uganda), Feb. 23 (ANI): Amin M. Mawji, OBE, Diplomatic Representative, Aga Khan Development hailed the growing partnership between India and Uganda, saying the relationship is building the foundation for future economic progress.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb 23 (ANI): Pakistan has speeded up its efforts to fight terrorists as it is silently enhancing its military capability by acquiring equipment and weapons required to combat terrorism.

Full Story >>

Kampala [Uganda], Feb. 23 (ANI): Rahul Sikka, Larsen and Toubro's Vice President and Head Africa Power Transmission and Distribution, has welcomed the decision to manufacture in Uganda with Indian skills and expertise, saying the local population needs to be empowered for long-term goals.

Full Story >>

Kampala (Uganda), Feb. 23 (ANI): Rahul Sikka, Larsen and Toubro's Vice President and Head Africa Power Transmission and Distribution, has said Prime Minister Narendra Modi's move to demonetise high-denomination currency notes of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 has brought more people into the periphery of tax-related activities.

Full Story >>

New York [USA], Feb. 23(ANI): Russia hits back over allegations that Moscow was involved in a failed coup in Montenegro and an attempt to assassinate the country's former Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic, stating the claims may damage relation between the two nations.

Full Story >>

New York[USA], Feb. 23(ANI): According to a recent poll, US President Donald Trump's approval rating has dropped over the last month, with a majority of voters now disapproving of his job performance.

Full Story >>

New York[USA], Feb. 23(ANI): Mexico indicated that it intends to take hard stand against Trump administration's new immigration directives that could have dramatic implications for the United States' southern neighbours, ahead of a visit by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Full Story >>

New York [USA], Feb. 23(ANI): The Indian-Americans are likely to be impacted by the Donald Trump administration's issuance of tough new orders for a sweeping crackdown on illegal immigrants.

Full Story >>

London [UK], Feb. 23(ANI): U.S. President Donald Trump's government revoked landmark guidance issued to public schools, in defense of transgender student rights, which would permanently scrap transgender student protections in schools.

Full Story >>

London [UK], Feb. 23(ANI): U.S. Vice President Mike Pence condemned "vile act of vandalism" at a suburban St. Louis Jewish cemetery, where more than 150 headstones were damaged earlier this week.

Full Story >>

New York [USA], Feb. 23(ANI): Former leader of Hong Kong Donald Tsang has been sentenced 20 months imprisonment for misconduct in public office.

Full Story >>

Marine Le Pen's aides under investigation

Updated: Feb 23, 2017 05:07 IST

New York [USA], Feb. 23(ANI): The chief staff of French leader Marine Le Pen was put under formal investigation after a day of questioning over the alleged misuse of European Union(EU) funds to pay parliamentary assistants.

Full Story >>