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Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

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The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

Pakistani Christian mother Asia Bibi's death sentence sparks protest in Australia

The death sentence handed to Pakistani Christian mother Asia Bibi over a blasphemy charge has sparked a protest in Australia calling on the government to intervene in the case and help save her from being executed.

In a letter to be submitted to the Parliamentarians in New South Wales, the demonstrators are demanding that the Australian government guarantee the continuous enforcement of the principle of "one law for all" in their country. They are also asking the government to consider once again donating $49 million in aid to Pakistan.

BPCA chairman Wilson Chowdhry also released a statement decrying Pakistan's failure to protect Bibi and other Christian minorities. Echoing the demands of the protesters, he said Australia can be a significant player in the case, pointing out that the United Kingdom, the United States, and other major donors have started donating aid to help improve human rights in Pakistan.

"Australia's official policy involves tackling poverty by generating sustainable growth and employment, as well as focusing on education and health, all worthy goals," said Chowdhry. "Some of the poorest Pakistani citizens are Christians, and unfortunately they are typically kept there by a combination of debt-slavery and direct and systematic religious oppression, frequently including systematic sex slavery and targeting of Christian girls and women for kidnap, rape, forced conversion and marriage."

Last month, prominent Christian lawyer Sooba Bhatti appealed to the President of Pakistan to grant Bibi pardon for the capital punishment. He also asked the president to order Christian mother's immediate release and acquittal, Christians in Pakistan reports.

Bibi was arrested in June 2009 over blasphemy charges and was given a death sentence by a local judge the following year. She was also handed down a penalty amounting to around US$1,100.

Source: Christian Daily, October 3, 2016

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