On Christian Persecution

From Voice of the Martyrs - Prison Alert:

"Seven years ago on February 5, 1999, Amjad Masih was arrested on vagrancy charges in the Pakistani town of Jhang. While in police custody, he was accused of burning the Quran (Koran) and charged under Pakistan's blasphemy law. The Pakistan penal code states in Section 295B: "Defiling of the Holy Koran. Whoever wilfully defiles, damages or desecrates a copy of the Holy Koran or of an extract therefrom or uses it in any derogatory manner or for any unlawful purpose shall be punishable with imprisonment for life." These blasphemy laws were introduced in 1985, and continue today.

Amjad insists the police framed him for refusing to pay a bribe. During August 2003, a high court hearing in Lahore endorsed a life sentence for him. While in prison, Amjad has suffered from depression and malaria. He and his wife Kusar have three sons and one daughter. During Lent last year, the two older sons prayed and fasted for their father's release.

Because these laws require only the testimony of one Muslim against another person, they have been misused to settle personal disputes and persecute minorities. President Pervez Musharraf had called for reform of these laws but withdrew his suggestion after it was met with threats of demonstrations by several Islamic organizations."

Prison Alert along with Voice of the Martyrs details the jailings and persecutions all over the world, not only from fundamental islamic countries such as Iran and Afghanistan, but political ones as well such as Russia and China. It is good that Abdul Rahman's plight is bringing attention to the issue, but again, this isn't new or even surprising to us who have been openly persecuted for being a follower of Jesus Christ. Indeed in the USA, a country founded on Christian principles, it's becoming almost a every day event to see Christian's openly ridiculed in the press, TV, film and even by our own local, state and federal government.

How far are we away from the measures taken in foriegn lands? Maybe a lot closer than some would realize.

UPDATE: Good post over at Polipundit.