Blasphemy Laws

The Latest

Pakistanis protest Nov. 2, 2018, in Lahore, shortly after the nation's supreme court acquitted Asia Bibi of blasphemy charges.

Pakistan tightens its already far-reaching blasphemy laws

Jan 23, 2023

By Jonah McKeown

Insulting the Prophet Muhammad is already a capital offense in Pakistan. Under the newest legal changes, those convicted will now... Read more

A photo of Deborah Emmanuel on her Facebook page. Emmanuel, a Christian student in Nigeria, was killed by an Islamic mob on her college campus on May 12, 2022.

Nigerian mother charged with blasphemy for defending murdered Christian student

Dec 20, 2022

By Peter Pinedo

Rhoda Jatau was arrested after forwarding a video of a Muslim denouncing the mob killing of Nigerian Christian college student... Read more

Map of Nigeria.

Nigerian musician files lawsuit with Supreme Court challenging blasphemy conviction

Dec 16, 2022

By Jonah McKeown

ADF International says the appeal has the potential to overturn Northern Nigeria’s blasphemy laws. Read more

The Supreme Court of Pakistan in Islamabad.

Pakistan’s top court grants bail to Christian facing blasphemy charge

Jan 10, 2022

By CNA Staff

A lawyer hailed the decision as ‘a very important ruling.’ Read more

Shagufta Kausar and Shafqat Emmanuel with three of their children after being released from death row in Pakistan July 1, 2021

After 7 years on death row in Pakistan, Christian couple granted asylum in Europe

Aug 13, 2021

By Hannah Brockhaus

A Pakistani Christian couple are "relieved to finally be free" after more than seven years on death row for false... Read more

Catholic woman with schizophrenia being held for blasphemy in Indonesia 

Jul 8, 2019

A mentally ill woman who identified herself as a Catholic is being held for blasphemy in Indonesia after an incident... Read more

Ashiq Mesih and Eisham Ashiq, Asia Bibi's husband and daughter in Rome April 15, 2015.

Asia Bibi leaves Pakistan, arrives in Canada

May 8, 2019

By Hannah Brockhaus

Asia Bibi, the Catholic wife and mother who spent 9 years on death row on blasphemy charges in Pakistan, has... Read more

Ashiq Mesih and Eisham Ashiq, Asia Bibi's husband and daughter, speak to CNA in Rome, April 15, 2015.

Court dismisses challenge to Asia Bibi blasphemy acquittal

Jan 29, 2019

By Hannah Brockhaus

A petition to overturn last year’s acquittal of blasphemy charges against Catholic wife and mother Asia Bibi was dismissed by... Read more

A young girl lights a candle at a Marian grotto in Pakistan.

A look at blasphemy laws around the world

Nov 14, 2018

By Courtney Mares

While the world awaits the fate of Asia Bibi, who remains in hiding in Pakistan following the acquittal of her... Read more

Ashiq Mesih and Eisham Ashiq, Asia Bibi's husband and daughter, speak to CNA in Rome, April 15, 2015.

Asia Bibi's husband begs US to offer asylum

Nov 5, 2018

The husband of the Pakistani Catholic woman who was recently acquitted of blasphemy charges is asking several Western nations to... Read more

The office of the Taoiseach in Dublin, Ireland.

Irish voters remove blasphemy punishment from constitution

Oct 26, 2018

Exit polls indicated Irish voters were expected to repeal the Republic of Ireland’s constitutional prohibition against blasphemy, with close to... Read more

Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imarn Khan.

Pakistan elects former cricketer, supporter of blasphemy laws

Jul 27, 2018

Imran Khan has emerged as the victor in a general election held in Pakistan Wednesday, July 25. The professional cricket... Read more

The site where the Christian couple were lynched at a brick factory in Pakistan's Punjab province in November 2014. Photo courtesy of Legal Evangelical Association Development.

In Pakistan, 13 sentenced over lynching of Christian couple

Nov 30, 2016

Five men in Pakistan's Punjab province were sentenced to death last week for their leading role in the November 2014... Read more

Horrific Easter bombing seen as a crossroad for Pakistan

Mar 28, 2016

By Matt Hadro

Religious freedom advocates have condemned the Easter Sunday bombing in Pakistan that killed more than 70, while insisting upon reform... Read more

Anti-Christian slogans on Saint Cyril Church in Cairo, Aug. 2013.

In Egypt, Christians can suffer under strict laws – and a pattern of lawlessness

Mar 11, 2016

By Kevin J. Jones

Four Coptic Christian teenagers face up to five years in prison after an Egyptian court found them guilty of insulting... Read more

Shahbaz Bhatti, who was assassinated March 2, 2011, speaks at a 2010 press conference in Islamabad.

Pakistani diocese opens cause for Shahbaz Bhatti to be declared a martyr

Mar 2, 2016

Marking the fifth anniverary of the assassination of Shahbaz Bhatti on Wednesday, a Pakistani diocese has opened a process of... Read more

A young girl lights a candle at a Marian grotto in Pakistan.

Pakistani police save Christian couple from 'anti-blasphemy' mob attack

Jul 6, 2015

Police last week saved a Christian couple from a mob in Pakistan that attempted to kill them for allegedly committing... Read more

Pope Francis greets Ashiq Mesih in St. Peter's Square during the Wednesday general audience on April 15, 2015.

Papal blessings for Asia Bibi’s family, as death sentence still looms

Apr 15, 2015

By Andrea Gagliarducci

Pope Francis has blessed the family of Asia Bibi, a Pakistani woman sentenced to death for blasphemy, as they continue... Read more

A young girl lights a candle at a Marian grotto in Pakistan.

In Pakistan, 'living the faith is a new challenge every day'

Dec 28, 2014

The brutality of the act can hardly be surpassed: in early November, a Christian couple was beaten and burned to... Read more

Christian and Muslim leaders meet with Mohammad Sawar, governor of Punjab province, Nov. 18, 2014. Photo courtesy of Fr. James Channan, O.P.

Christians, Muslims unite for justice over couple burned in kiln

Nov 20, 2014

In the two weeks since a Christian couple was killed by a Muslim mob in Pakistan, local leaders from both... Read more