A Pakistani Christian woman’s appeal to Britain for asylum has been denied because her arrival in the country may stir civil unrest, HuffPost UK has been told.
Asia Bibi, a Christian farm labourer, was released from prison in Pakistan on Wednesday after being acquitted of blasphemy. She had spent eight years on death row after an argument with a group of Muslim women in June 2009.
The Supreme Court of Pakistan overturned Bibi’s 2010 conviction for “insulting the prophet Mohammed” last week, saying the case against her was based on flimsy evidence.
But her acquittal sparked violent protests led by Islamic religious hardliners, and the government has now agreed to try to stop her leaving the country.
On Saturday her lawyer, Saif Mulook, fled Pakistan, saying he feared for his life. Bibi’s husband, Ashiq Masih, has also released a video message saying he too fears for his family’s safety.
“I am requesting the Prime Minister of the UK help us and as far as possible grant us freedom,” he said.
But campaigners working to secure Bibi’s move abroad said the UK government had not offered her asylum, citing security concerns.
Tajamal Amar, 46, fled to the UK from Pakistan 10 years ago after being targeted in a drive-by shooting by Islamists who wanted to convert him. He was working as a delivery driver in Derby in October 2017 when he was attacked by “young local Muslim men”.
Amar told HuffPost UK that it was the third time in 12 months he had been targeted in the UK because of his Christian faith.
He said: “I came to the UK to get away from being attacked and so I never expected that the same would happen to me here.
“This country is still better than Pakistan where anti-minority feeling is in the mainstream.”
So: Her Majesty’s government won’t offer asylum to a Christian woman who has ample reason to fear for her life in Pakistan, because she is a Christian, in part because the UK authorities are afraid of how Pakistani Muslims living in Britain will react.
This morally disgusting outcome is what happens when you allow your country to become Islamized. Britain is not “Islamized,” of course, but there are enough Muslims there such that an asylum offer to poor Asia Bibi is off the table, because of fears of violence.
Think about that.
The US should offer to take Asia Bibi and her family in, and tell Karachi to go hang.
The streets of Karachi. Thousands of supporters of Islamist Parties protesting the freeing of #AsiaBibi.
This is a glimpse in our future in the U.K. De facto blasphemy laws are already in play here.
— Katie Hopkins (@KTHopkins) November 10, 2018