A young mother of two was stoned to death in Pakistan. That’s not at all unusual, unfortunately. Her crime, though, is that she was in possession of a cell phone and Muslim leaders deemed this worthy of death. Arifa Bibi’s uncle, cousins and many others hurled rocks and other objects at the young woman until she suffered sufficient blunt force trauma and died. She was buried deep in the desert and relatives were not permitted to attend her burial, nor even know where her body was dumped. Being stoned is a horrible way to die. It is practiced, legally or illegally, in at least 15 Muslim countries and it is on the rise in places like Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. Even though stoning isn’t specifically mentioned in the Qu’ran (although it certainly is in the Bible), it is legitimised by the Hadith, the acts and sayings of Mohammed. Stoning is prescribed as a proper punishment for crimes such as adultery in some versions of Sharia Law. According to some interpretations, in fact, if a woman even admits that she’s been raped, she’s signing her own death warrant as she’s admitting to the crime of zina (sex outside of marriage). But of course, we can’t end here, stoning is really quite common among Muslims. How about the case of 13-year old Aisha Ibrahim Duhulow who was buried up to her neck in the sand and then stoned to death by 50 men in the middle of a stadium in Kismayu in 2008 before more than 1000 witnesses. Her father reported to Amnesty International that Aisha had been raped by three men, but when she tried to report the rape to authorities, instead, she was put to death for daring to allow herself to be assaulted. Not enough? How about the case of Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, an Iranian woman who was sentenced to death by stoning, but after an international outcry, Muslim legislators dropped stoning from her possible list of punishments, kept her in prison, and once the furor died down, reinstated stoning as a possible sentence. These people just don’t care. However, after much deliberation, they decided that they’d hang her instead, which I guess is a better death than stoning, if you have to rank these things. She remains inprisoned in Tabriz, Iran, her current fate or condition is unknown. I could honestly go on all day long. Stoning is considered a legal punishment for adultery in Mauritania, a third of Nigeria’s 36 states, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. It is widely used, especially in outlying areas, throughout much of the rest of the Muslim world. Legality doesn’t matter much to these people, after all, their only authority is Sharia Law and they’re only too happy to scoff at the law of the land otherwise. “In Afghanistan, warlords are manipulating religion to terrorise the population for their own political ends. Stoning is one way of doing that,” said Naureen Shameem, a human rights lawyer who is co-ordinating the Stop Stoning Women campaign and a part of the international rights group Women Living Under Muslim Laws. Stoning contravenes a host of UN treaties including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which states that no one should be subjected to torture, or cruel or inhuman punishment. The treaty, which Iran and Pakistan have signed, allows countries to execute people only for “the most serious crimes”. Not that most extremist Muslims care about such things. They’re all a bunch of animals. No wonder they end up featured on Horror Show Sunday.