In June 2009 in Punjab, Pakistan, Asia Bibi, a mother of five and a farmhand, was asked to fetch water. She complied, but some of her Muslim co-workers refused to drink the water, as Bibi is a Christian and considered "unclean" by them. Arguments ensued, resulting in some co-workers complaining to a local cleric's wife that Bibi had made derogatory comments about the prophet Muhammad. A mob reportedly stormed her house, assaulting Bibi and her family.
However, the police initiated an investigation of Bibi, not her attackers. She was arrested and prosecuted for blasphemy, under Section 295C of the Pakistan Penal Code. She spent more than a year in jail. On Nov. 8, she was sentenced to death by hanging; she has since filed an appeal.
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