blasphemy - updates

Rappler's latest stories on blasphemy


Pakistani professor sentenced to death for blasphemy

Dec 21, 2019 - 8:22 PM

Junaid Hafeez, 33, is sentenced to death for allegedly insulting Prophet Mohammed in predominantly Muslim Pakistan

To honor Celdran, Lagman files bill repealing 'archaic' crime of blasphemy

Oct 21, 2019 - 11:31 AM

Albay Representative Edcel Lagman says the crime of offending religious feelings, of which the late Carlos Celdran was found guilty, is an 'odious remnant of the Dark Ages'

U.S. says Pakistani Christian Asia Bibi 'safely reunited' with family

May 08, 2019 - 6:47 PM

(UPDATED) It is not clear when Bibi may have left or where she may have gone, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declines to confirm whether she has arrived in Canada

Twitter warns global users their tweets violate Pakistani law

Dec 11, 2018 - 2:06 PM

Furey and two critics of extremism in Islam say they are 'shocked' to have received notices by the social media giant this past week over alleged violations of Islamabad's laws, despite having no apparent connection to the country

Pakistan military says 'patience' tested ahead of mass blasphemy protests

Nov 02, 2018 - 4:41 PM

'We are tolerating remarks against us but action can be taken according to the law and constitution,' says the Pakistan military spokesman. 'Don’t force us into taking an action.'

Students of Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT), a wing of religious political party Pakistan Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), march as they chant slogans following the Supreme Court decision to acquit Christian woman Asia Bibi of blasphemy, in Karachi on November 1, 2018. Pakistan's Imran Khan won praise for his stance against religious hardliners, as demonstrators blocked major roads to protest the Supreme Court's overturning of a blasphemy conviction. ASIF HASSAN / AFP

Pakistan overturns Christian woman's blasphemy death sentence

Oct 31, 2018 - 12:52 PM

'The appeal is allowed. She has been acquitted. The judgement of high court as well as trial court is reversed. Her conviction is set aside,' says Pakistan's Chief Justice Saqib Nisar

Pakistan court hands out death sentence over blasphemy lynching

Feb 07, 2018 - 9:33 PM

'One of the accused has been awarded a death sentence, (five) were given life imprisonment while 26 have been acquitted,' Saad Abbasi, a defence lawyer, says at the prison where the verdict was announced

OUTSIDE THE COURT. Pakistani relatives of suspects accused in a blasphemy lynching case speak outside the central jail after an anti-terrorist court's verdict in Haripur district on February 7, 2018. Photo by Aamir Qureshi/AFP

Pakistan braces for military response after violent clashes

Nov 26, 2017 - 12:33 PM

Police and paramilitary forces pulled back from an operation to break up a huge sit-in that had paralyzed Islamabad for weeks after their clearance operation on Saturday turned deadly

CLASHES. Pakistani riot policemen gather around the burning tents of protesters of the Tehreek-i-Labaik Yah Rasool Allah Pakistan (TLYRAP) religious group in Islamabad on November 25, 2017. Photo by Aamir Qureshi / AFP

Clashes as Pakistani police try to disperse sit-in

Nov 25, 2017 - 4:59 PM

Smoke and tear gas fill the air as the roughly 8,500 elite police and paramilitary troops in riot gear were also seen throwing rocks and using slingshots in the ongoing bid to clear 2,000 or so hardline demonstrators.

PROTEST. A Pakistani protester of the Tehreek-i-Labaik Yah Rasool Allah Pakistan (TLYRAP) religious group throws a tear gas shell back towards police during a clash in Islamabad on November 25, 2017. Photo by Aamir Qureshi / AFP

Jakarta's Christian governor decides not to appeal blasphemy conviction

May 22, 2017 - 5:27 PM

The change of heart happened last minute as Ahok s lawyers prepared to submit the appeal to the High Court

Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, better known by his nickname Ahok, sits in the defendant's chair during his trial at the North Jakarta District Court in Jakarta on December 13, 2016.  Hardline Muslims rallied on December 13 under heavy police guard outside an Indonesian courthouse where Jakarta's Christian governor Purnama is standing trial in a high-profile blasphemy case that has gripped national attention. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Tatan SYUFLANA

Backlash after Ahok verdict: Calls to repeal blasphemy law revived

May 10, 2017 - 6:23 PM

Laws that criminalize blasphemy when applied in a discriminatory manner can have a serious inhibiting effect on freedom of expression and on freedom of religion or belief

FACING TRIAL. In this file photo, Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, better known by his nickname Ahok, sits in the defendant's chair during his trial at the North Jakarta District Court in Jakarta on December 13, 2016. Tatan Syulflana/AFP

Supporters rally for Jakarta's jailed Christian governor

May 10, 2017 - 2:41 PM

The jail sentence and his loss in last month s Jakarta s election to a Muslim rival amid the blasphemy controversy have stoked concerns that a much vaunted brand of tolerant Islam is under threat

'THANK YOU AHOK' A woman walks past a farewell wreaths for Basuki Tjahaja Purnama also known as Ahok, Jakarta's first non-Muslim governor for half a century and its first ethnic Chinese leader, at city hall in Jakarta, on May 10, 2017. Bay Ismoyo/AFP

Why I'm not surprised by Ahok's jail sentence

May 09, 2017 - 9:12 PM

I don’t want to argue whether his words are blasphemy or not but I don’t think it is wise for a high profile public servant or public figure to say something that he is not actually suitable to talk about

Governor of DKI Jakarta Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama, go inside the court before the judges sentences him for 2 years in jail. Photo by Ursula Florene/Rappler

China, Quiapo blasts, Sotto | Evening wRap

May 09, 2017 - 8:43 PM

Watch the evening newscast with Ana Arceo

Jakarta's governor ordered jailed for blasphemy

May 09, 2017 - 12:04 PM

UPDATED Basuki Ahok Tjahaja Purnama was hauled into court last year to face trial for allegedly insulting Islam while campaigning for re election in a case critics said was politically motivated

ATTACKED. Indonesian protesters chant in front of a poster of Basuki Tjahaja Purnama or Ahok, as they march down the capital city's main street after a demonstration at Jakarta's National Monument Park on December 2, 2016. AFP PHOTO / GOH CHAI HIN

Marcos, Arroyo, Ahok | Evening wRap

Apr 20, 2017 - 8:39 PM

Watch the evening newscast with Ana Arceo

ANALYSIS: Jakarta governor election result is a victory for prejudice over pluralism

Apr 20, 2017 - 3:25 PM

The election was the most politically significant regional election in Indonesia’s history because it was a referendum on the future of Indonesia’s ethno religious diversity and tolerance after unwanted intervention by a number of radical Islamist groups

Foto oleh Diego Batara/Rappler

After poll defeat, Jakarta's Christian governor may escape jail

Apr 20, 2017 - 2:29 PM

The recommendation of two years probation in the trial of Basuki Tjahaja Purnama is lighter than expected as he could have been sent to prison for several years

LIGHTER SENTENCE. This file photo taken on November 16, 2016 shows Jakarta's governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama gesturing during his campaign for the next round of the governor elections in Jakarta. Bay Ismoyo/AFP

Tight race: Jakarta's governor elections likely headed to second round

Feb 15, 2017 - 3:07 PM

Private pollsters are predicting a run off between incumbent Basuki Tjahaja Purnama or Ahok and ex education minister Anies Baswedan

An Indonesian woman casts her vote in local elections at a polling station in Jakarta on February 15, 2017. Bay Ismoyo/AFP

Indonesia's capital Jakarta votes for next governor

Feb 14, 2017 - 11:17 AM

(UPDATED) It will be a test of Indonesia’s religious intolerance, a battle of emotions versus rationality, and one that is predicted to be an extremely close race in what has been a rollercoaster campaign season.

Jakarta's Christian governor stands trial for blasphemy

Dec 13, 2016 - 2:42 PM

The high profile case has gripped national attention and stoked fears of growing intolerance towards minorities in the world s largest Muslim majority nation

ON TRIAL. Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, better known by his nickname Ahok, sits in the defendant's chair during his trial at the North Jakarta District Court in Jakarta on December 13, 2016. Tatan Syuflana/AFP

Cheat sheet: 5 things you need to know about the Ahok blasphemy case

Dec 12, 2016 - 11:49 AM

Here s all you need to know about one of the biggest religious and political scandals in Indonesia in 2016

ATTACKED. Indonesian protesters chant in front of a poster of Basuki Tjahaja Purnama or Ahok, as they march down the capital city's main street after a demonstration at Jakarta's National Monument Park on December 2, 2016. AFP PHOTO / GOH CHAI HIN

Indonesia faces test of religious tolerance as Jakarta's governor faces blasphemy trial

Dec 12, 2016 - 11:11 AM

Basuki Tjahaja Purnama or Ahok – the first Christian to govern Jakarta in more than 50 years – will defend allegations that he insulted the Koran and fight calls for his imprisonment under Indonesia s tough blasphemy laws

This file photo taken on November 16, 2016 shows Jakarta's governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama gesturing during his campaign for the next round of the governor elections in Jakarta. Bay Ismoyo/AFP

Foreign governments warn citizens before Jakarta rally

Dec 01, 2016 - 6:27 PM

During the last protest clashes began in the evening when hardliners refused to disperse with protesters hurling missiles and police responding with tear gas and water cannon

VIOLENCE. An Indonesian man hurls a rock at police near the presidential palace in clashes that marred an otherwise peaceful rally against governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, a Christian accused of insulting Islam, in Jakarta on November 4, 2016. Photo by AFP

Huge deployment of security forces planned for Jakarta rally

Nov 30, 2016 - 8:15 AM

Police said they expect at least 150 000 protesters to turn out for the demonstration against Ahok who is also a member of Indonesia s small ethnic Chinese minority

HIGH SECURITY. Military and police were also deployed in the November 4 rally.

Jakarta governor questioned by police over blasphemy allegations

Nov 22, 2016 - 7:06 PM

Police are pursuing allegations that Basuki Tjahaja Purnama better known by his nickname Ahok insulted the Koran a criminal offense that carries a jail sentence in the world s most populous Muslim majority country

SPOTLIGHT. Ahok faces police for questioning regarding his blasphemy case. FILE PHOTO

Jakarta governor named suspect in blasphemy case

Nov 16, 2016 - 4:08 PM

Police said the allegations against Basuki Ahok Tjahaja Purnama who is also the first member of Indonesia s ethnic Chinese minority to lead Jakarta should go to trial and ordered him not to leave the country

Kabareskrim Polri Komjen Pol Ari Dono Sukmanto menunjukkan surat putusan hasil gelar perkara kasus dugaan penistaan agama yang dituduhkan kepada Gubernur DKI Jakarta nonaktif Basuki Tjahaja Purnama di Mabes Polri, Jakarta, Rabu (16/11). Foto oleh M Agung Rajasa/ANTARA

Thousands of Islamic groups protest against governor's alleged blasphemy

Nov 04, 2016 - 6:43 PM

While the protest was peaceful some posters called for violence against the Jakarta governor

Para pengunjuk rasa sebelum salat Jumat. Foto oleh Sakinah Ummu Haniy/Rappler.

Pakistani student and teacher accused of blasphemy

Oct 14, 2016 - 8:43 PM

Any disrespect to the Koran is punishable with life imprisonment under the conservative Muslim country s controversial blasphemy laws

A look at religion in Indonesia 71 years since independence

Aug 17, 2016 - 6:15 PM

Indonesia is religiously tolerant relative to other countries but it has its own challenges to achieving religious harmony

RELIGIOUS HARMONY. Indonesia faces its own challenges in achieving religious harmony. File photo by EPA/MAST IRHAM

Islamists end protest in Pakistani capital

Mar 31, 2016 - 12:58 AM

The stand off comes as Pakistan mourns more than 70 people killed in a Taliban suicide bombing targeting Christians celebrating Easter Sunday in Lahore

PAKISTAN PROTEST. Supporters of Mumtaz Qadri, a police guard who was executed last month for killing former Governor of Punjab province over a blasphemy law comment, end their 3-day long protest in Islamabad, Pakistan, March 30, 2016. Photo by T. Mughal/EPA

Pakistan blast, Comelec site hacked, Diwata-1 | 12PM wRap

Mar 28, 2016 - 12:00 PM

Watch Rappler’s 12PM newscast with Maria Ressa

Pakistan police clash with supporters of executed Islamist assassin

Mar 27, 2016 - 10:45 PM

Tear gas is fired as thousands of Mumtaz Qadri s supporters try to push closer to Pakistan s heavily barricaded capital

Supporters of executed Islamist Mumtaz Qadri retreat from smoke after tear gas shelling by authorities during an anti-government protest in Rawalpindi on March 27, 2016. Pakistani police fired tear gas at thousands of stone-throwing supporters of an Islamist assassin, a month after he was hanged for killing a provincial governor for alleged blasphemy / AFP / FAROOQ NAEEM

Pakistan tensions high ahead of Islamist assassin's funeral

Mar 01, 2016 - 3:02 PM

UPDATED Tens of thousands gather for the funeral of Mumtaz Qadri while police line the procession route

IN PROTEST. Supporters of Mumtaz Qadri, an ex-police guard who had in January 2011 killed a former governor for opposing the country's blasphemy laws, shout slogans during a protest after he was hanged to death, in Hyderabad, Pakistan, February 29, 2016. Nadeem Khawer/EPA

Thousands protest in Pakistan as governor's killer is hanged

Feb 29, 2016 - 11:02 PM

Thousands protest in Pakistani cities against the execution of a man hailed by hardline Islamists as a hero for killing a provincial governor who was seeking reform of the blasphemy law

PROTEST. Pakistani riot policemen watch as supporters of former police bodyguard Mumtaz Qadri burn tires during a protest against Qadri's execution in Islamabad on February 29, 2016. Photo by Aamir Qureshi

Pakistan lifts YouTube ban

Jan 19, 2016 - 5:39 PM

The move comes after Google launched a version of the video streaming site for Pakistan

Resist 'religious correctness', press body urges on Charlie anniversary

Jan 07, 2016 - 11:29 PM

The group s call comes after the Vatican decries the controversial cover of Charlie Hebdo that pictures a God figure on the run carrying a gun

A picture taken on January 7, 2016 shows a makeshift memorial for the victims of Paris attacks at the Place de la Republique in Paris, as France holds official ceremonies marking a year since a jihadist attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo, with the French satirical magazine defiantly reasserting its provocative spirit.

Vague laws force Indonesia’s atheists to lay low

May 28, 2015 - 4:07 PM

Indonesia s religious affairs minister says atheism isn t illegal but spreading the belief is

LEGAL? An Indonesian man views the Facebook page of Atheist Minang, operated by a group of Indonesian atheists, at an internet shop in Jakarta. Photo by AFP/Romeo Gacad

The wRap Indonesia: Dec. 16, 2014

Dec 16, 2014 - 11:53 AM

Alleged Indonesian militants deported from Malaysia Jokowi s daughter fails civil servant test rupiah continues tumble and more

TRAGEDY. A rescue team remove bodies of victims of a landslide triggered by torrential downpours at Jemblung village in Banjarnegara, Central Java, on December 13, 2014. Photo by AFP

The wRap Indonesia: Dec. 12, 2014

Dec 12, 2014 - 12:05 PM

Indonesian Twitter records for 2014 concerns over a suspected pedophile roaming free wreckage of Nazi U boat found and more

FLAG CARRIER. A Garuda Boeing 747-400 plane at the Soekarno-Hatta airport in Tangerang. File photo by AFP

Jakarta Post chief editor named blasphemy suspect

Dec 12, 2014 - 10:01 AM

The case centers on an editorial cartoon critical of the Islamic State but containing religious symbolism deemed offensive to Islam by some groups

OFFENSIVE CARTOON. Islamic groups protested Jakarta Post's anti-Islamic State editorial cartoon in July. Screenshot from

Amnesty calls on Indonesia to nix harsh blasphemy laws

Nov 21, 2014 - 1:56 PM

Amnesty said incarceration of individuals under the blasphemy laws had skyrocketed during former leader Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono s 10 years in power resulting in the jailing of more than 100 people

Indonesian Shiite cleric Tajul Muluk (center) is escorted by police after an Indonesian court sentenced Muluk to two years in prison for blasphemy in Sampang on the island of Madura on July 12, 2012. Photo by Juni Kriswanto/AFP

Pakistani court asks news anchors to respond to blasphemy charges

May 19, 2014 - 10:33 PM

Pakistan uses blasphemy laws more than any other country in the world listing 14 people on death row and 19 others serving life sentences for insulting Islam

Pakistan court sentences Briton to death for blasphemy

Jan 24, 2014 - 9:13 PM

Pakistan s tough blasphemy laws have attracted criticism from rights groups who say they are frequently abused to settle personal scores

10 dead as police clash with Bangladesh Islamists

May 06, 2013 - 6:46 AM

At least 10 people were killed Sunday May 5 as police clashed with thousands of hardline Islamists demanding a new blasphemy law

Protesters burn Christian homes in Pakistan blasphemy row

Mar 09, 2013 - 10:42 PM

The exact number of houses in Joseph Colony a Christian neighbourhood in Badami Bagh area were not immediately known but police and rescue officials said they belonged to low to middle class families from the minority community

Pakistan court grants bail to Christian 'blasphemy' girl

Sep 07, 2012 - 4:01 PM

A Pakistani court on granted bail to a Christian girl accused of blasphemy in a case that has sparked an international outcry

Pakistan imam held for evidence-tampering in blasphemy case

Sep 02, 2012 - 2:54 PM

Pakistani police have arrested a Muslim cleric on suspicion of planting evidence against a Christian girl accused of blasphemy