Vatican defends accused 11-year-old29 August 2012
The Vatican's top official for relations with other faiths has defended an 11-year-old Pakistani girl accused of desecrating the Qu'ran, pointing out that the girl has Down's Syndrome and is illiterate.
"We're dealing with a girl who doesn't know how to read or write, who collected rubbish in order to live, and collected fragments of that book that she found in the garbage," said Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran. "Before saying a sacred text was made an object of scorn, we need to verify the facts," he told Vatican Radio on Saturday.
Rimsha Masih, a Christian, is to stand trial on Thursday. Police originally claimed she was 16 but medical experts said yesterday that Rimsha's physical age is under 14 and that her mental age is lower.
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