More than 500 Islamic clerics in Pakistan have signed a declaration against terrorism.
The Islamabad Declaration is also against violence committed in the name of religion and fatwas issues indiscriminately by radical ulema.
The document also makes reference to Asia Bibi and states her acquittal, which is under review, must be heard as a priority.
It’s documented consists of seven points and contains elements relevant to religious freedom.
The clerics also all signed to say 2019 will be the year Pakistan terrorism, extremism and sectarian violence are stamped out of Pakistan.
The resolution states that non-Muslims living in Pakistan must enjoy the same rights as everyone else and that the government of Pakistan must protect the basic rights of minorities.
“The influence of a given religion in a nation ought never to mean that citizens of another religion can be subject to discrimination in social life or, even worse, that violence against them can be tolerated.”...
- Pope Emeritus Benedict
“There is a very clear sense that people are nervous about the misuse of the blasphemy law, as a tool of politics or “…a mob thing […] ” he added, flanked by two Pakistani bishops. He earlier told reporters: “Equality under the law is important…”...
- Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury
“The law for punishing blasphemy against the Prophet (sws) that is invoked in Pakistan has no foundation in the Qur'ān or Hadith.”...
- Javed Ahmad Ghamidi, Renowned Quranic scholar & Islamic modernist theologist
“The problem is not so much the idea of a law against blasphemy, as about a law whose penalty is so severe and whose practice gives so much scope for allowing people to settle private scores.” ...
- Dr Rowan Williams, 104th Archbishop of Canterbury