Lahore (Pakistan): A Christian man has been sentenced to death for blasphemy by a Pakistan court after a close friend accused him of sharing material that insulted Islam on Whatsapp. 35-year-old Nadeem James was arrested in July, 2016 after his friend Yasir Bashir filed a complaint to the police that he received a poem on WhatsApp, ridiculing Prophet Mohammad and other holy figures, the local media reported.
The accused “was handed a death sentence by the court on Thursday on blasphemy charges,” said defence lawyer Riaz Anjum. Under the country’s strict blasphemy laws, anyone accused of insulting Islam and its key religious figures risks being sentenced to death. The European Parliament has criticised Pakistan’s human rights record and squarely reminded Islamabad that it has grossly erred in handing down capital punishment for those allegedly violating the nation’s blasphemy laws.