Pakistan hangs ex-governor's killer, sparking tensions

AP News
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Posted: Feb 29, 2016 1:27 AM

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan has hanged the convicted killer of a former governor shot in 2011 by his bodyguard who accused him of blasphemy.

Monday's execution triggered protests in several cities denouncing the hanging after some religious and political leaders, as well as militant groups, publicly defended the killer. Most schools are also closing down in the capital and the nearby city of Rawalpindi in fear of violence by supporters of the killer, Mumtaz Qadri.

Qadri was on guard duty for secular Gov. Salman Taseer who was campaigning in support of a Christian woman jailed for years on accusations of blasphemy. He shot the governor, and later confessed to it.

Taseer had called for amendments in harsh Pakistan's blasphemy laws, which are often misused against both Muslims and religious minorities to settle rivalries.