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March 28, 2014

Pakistani Christian convicted of blasphemy

Death sentence for #SawanMasih generates anger and memories of anti-Christian riots in Lahore.

Pakistani Christian minority members shout slogans during a protest against the attack on their community members in Lahore, Pakistan, 10 March 2013. (EPA/RAHAT DAR)

A Pakistani court has sentenced Sawan Masih, a Christian man, to death after finding him guilty of blasphemy. Masih's case gained prominence last year when accusations of blasphemy sparked riots in his predominantly Christian neighbourhood, Joseph Colony. Mobs of 3,000 people burnt and ransacked more than 200 Christian homes in the eastern city of Lahore.

While the police arrested more than 83 suspects involved in the riots, there have been no convictions. 

Pakistanis online were critical of the sentencing, calling on the international community to take action.