Thousands are protesting in Pakistan today, blocking roads in major cities and pelting police with stones, after the supreme court overturned the death sentence of Asia Bibi, a Pakistani Christian farm labourer convicted of blasphemy.
At the forefront of the rioting are the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), a political party made up of religious extremists dedicated to punishing blasphemy. Reacting to the verdict, the TLP called for the judges to be killed and for army officers to commit mutiny against the army chief.
The TLP and its ilk have enjoyed a lot of leeway from consecutive governments when it comes to inflammatory statements and protests, but this might have been a step too far.
In an ordeal that lasted for eight long years, many of which she spent in solitary confinement, Asia Bibi was a victim of religious bigotry, falsely accused of insulting the Prophet Muhammad when she had refused to convert . . .