Pakistan Grants Bail To Young Christian Jailed For Blasphemy

Thursday, March 18, 2021

By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) - A young Christian man sentenced to 10 years imprisonment in Pakistan for “blasphemy” against Islam has been released on bail, Christians confirmed Thursday.

The Lahore High Court decided in the case against Nabeel Masih, who was convicted and jailed in 2018 at the age of 16.

He had been accused of “liking" and sharing a picture on his Facebook website deemed disrespectful to the “Kaaba,” or “sacred shrine,” in Mecca, Saudi Arabia

However, his lawyer successfully argued this month that there was no evidence indicating that Masih was responsible for the Facebook post, trial observers said.

The picture had already been removed after his initial arrest to prevent further violence, added advocacy group Voice Of the Martyrs Canada (VOMC). “He has been released on bail until the paperwork to acquit him is completed,” VOMC told Worthy News.

It was not immediately clear how much money had been paid for the bail.

Activists and Christians say that blasphemy laws are frequently used for personal gain, vendettas, or as a means to oppress Christians and other minorities in the Islamic nation.

“Even when charges are found to be false and subsequently dropped by authorities, the formerly accused Christians frequently encounter mob violence,” VOMC recalled.

The group said it had urged supporters to pray for a full acquittal of Masih and for “many other Christians who are still being held in Pakistani prisons due to false blasphemy charges.”