Jordan: Christian author accused of blasphemy shot dead as he was entering the court

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A Christian writer who was accused of committing blasphemy was shot dead just when he was entering Jordan’s highest court to face trial for blasphemy charges. Nahed Hattar, a prominent Jordanian writer was accused of committing blasphemy for sharing cartoon deemed offensive to Islam.

Christian writer shot dead in Jordan

Nahed was shot as he was entering the highest court to stand trial for allegedly offending Islam. 56-years-old, Christian writer was struck by three bullets as the unknown assailant was arrested on Sunday, September 25. According to the witnesses, the gunman shot Nahed at a close range just when he was preparing to enter the courthouse.

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“He was standing at a short distance of about one meter in front of Nahed on the stairs of the Supreme Court,” a witness told on condition of anonymity, as he was fearful of consequences for bearing witness against the gunman.

A Jordanian government’s spokesperson Muhammad Momani condemned the killing terming it as a “heinous crime.” He said: “The government will strike with an iron hand all those who exploit this crime to broadcast speeches of hatred to our community.”

Nahed Hattar was arrested on August 13, after he posted a caricature on his Facebook account. The cartoon depicted a bearded man in heaven smoking in bed with women, asking God to fetch him wine and cashews. However, shortly after posting the cartoon, he removed the post stating: “it mocks terrorists and their concept of God and heaven. It does not infringe God’s divinity in any way.” However, it’s not known who had created the cartoon. The caricature was deemed offensive by majority of the Muslims in the country.