Chinese national charged with blasphemy in Pakistan

Chinese national charged with blasphemy in Pakistan
Protest in Pakistan against people charged with blasphemy. © KM Chaudary/AP via Al Jazeera, 2023.


Julija Stavar 

Team Pakistan Intern, 

Global Human Rights Defence

A Chinese engineer working on a construction project in Pakistan has been accused of blasphemy against Islam by other workers and is now under police custody (Al Jazeera, 2023). Allegedly the engineer commented on the slow pace of work because of the prayings during the month of Ramadan, officials said (Al Jazeera, 2023). The police report later disclosed that the man made insulting remarks and gestures criticising God and Muhammad (Hussain, 2023). He was thus accused of making blasphemous remarks and led about 400 people to protest who blocked the Karakoram Highway, which links Pakistan to China, demanding the arrest of the Chinese engineer (Al Jazeera, 2023; Hussain, 2023). 

The engineer was later taken into police custody for precautionary measures in Dasu and a crowd attacked the police station when the police were preparing the prosecution paperwork (Al Jazeera, 2023). As they showed a copy of the case registered on blasphemy charges, the crowd dispersed (Al Jazeera, 2023). The engineer however denied the accusations during his court appearance and the Abbottabad anti-terrorism court has ordered for him to be remanded into judicial custody for another two weeks pending trial (Hussain, 2023). China’s foreign ministry spokesperson, Wang Wenbin, said that the embassy in Islamabad is verifying the information regarding the case, and if the case involves a Chinese national, it will provide consular protection and assistance (Pakistan Today, 2023).

Blasphemy laws in Pakistan are one of the harshest in the world. Blasphemy is punishable by death, but there have been no official executions. However, many people facing the charges have been lynched by outraged mobs (Hussain, 2023). 


Al Jazeera. (2023, April 17). Chinese engineer charged with blasphemy in Pakistan. Al Jazeera. Retrieved April 20, 2023, from 

Hussain, A. (2023, April 19). Chinese man accused of blasphemy in Pakistan taken into custody. Al Jazeera. Retrieved April 20, 2023, from 

Pakistan Today. (2023, April 19). China says embassy verifying reports of alleged blasphemy by its national. Pakistan Today. Retrieved April 20, 2023, from