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These two laws are part of what is known as Martial Law Ordinance XX, which amended Pakistan’s Penal Code and Press Publication Ordinance Sections 298-B and 298-C.For fear of being charged with “indirectly or directly posing as a Muslim,” Ahmadi Muslims cannot profess their faith, either verbally or in writing.Pakistan, the court reasoned, had the right to protect the sanctity of religious terms under these laws and the right to prevent their usage by non-Muslims.The court also pointed to the sacredness of religious terms under the Shari’ pleased to present below the first part in a two-part series featuring a discussion on the legal status of Ahmadi Muslims in Pakistan by the advocate and lawyer, Mr. The event was co-sponsored by the Harvard Human Rights Program, Harvard Human Rights Law Journal, Harvard Law School Advocates for Human Rights, Harvard South Asian Law Students Association, and Ahmadiyya Muslim Lawyers Association USA, and moderated by Amjad Mahmood Khan, Esq.

Their punishments ranged from fines to indefinite detention to life imprisonment to the death sentence.

As has been well-chronicled by the International Community, since 1984, Pakistan has used its Criminal Code to prohibit and punish blasphemy.

Blasphemy in Pakistan broadly refers to any spoken or written representation that “directly or indirectly” outrages the religious sentiments of Muslims.

Ordinance XX, the court maintained, merely prohibited Ahmadi Muslims from “calling themselves what they are not,” namely Muslims.

On July 3, 1993, the Supreme Court of Pakistan dismissed eight appeals brought by Ahmadi Muslims who were arrested under Ordinance XX and Section 295-C.

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