Pakistani Minister Assassinated

Christian lawmaker opposed blasphemy laws
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 2, 2011 3:43 AM CST
Updated Mar 2, 2011 5:00 AM CST
An relative of Pakistan's government minister for religious minorities Shahbaz Bhatti mourns outside a local hospital in Islamabad, Pakistan.   (AP Photo/Anjum Naveed)
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(Newser) – Pakistan's minister for religious minorities was gunned down today in the country's capital, AP reports. Shahbaz Bhatti, himself a member of the country's Christian minority, had been threatened by Islamic militants in the past for calling for reforms of the country's strict blasphemy laws, which impose the death penalty for insulting Islam. The governor of Punjab province was killed earlier this year by a bodyguard angered at his opposition to the same laws. (Read more Pakistan stories.)

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