Thursday, February 15, 2018

Pakistan: Catholics mourn Ahmadiyya-linked iconic activist's death


She was imprisoned in 1983 for spearheading the first public demonstration against the repressive regime of General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | Int'l Desk
Source/Credit: UCA News
By Kamran Chaudhry | February 14, 2018

The Catholic Church in Pakistan has joined the nation in mourning the death of Asma Jahangir, an iconic rights activist.

Known for fearlessly supporting women and minority groups, she criticized draconian anti-blasphemy laws as well as the politicization of state institutions.

Jahangir, 66, died of a cardiac arrest in the northeastern city of Lahore on Feb. 11, her family said.

Frequently branded an "enemy of the state" and anti-Islam, Jahangir provided free legal aid to peasants seeking the return of land occupied by the military.

She identified as a Muslim but was said by various opponents to be linked to the Ahmadiyya sect, which is not accepted by some groups as being Islamic.

She was a co-founder of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.

She was imprisoned in 1983 for spearheading the first public demonstration against the repressive regime of General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq.

Jahangir was instrumental in a campaign that resulted in Pakistani women acquiring the right to marry of their own free will in 2003.

A former UN special rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, she also campaigned against capital punishment.


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