Pakistani leader may pardon condemned Christian woman

The case of Asia Bibi, 45, has drawn appeals from Pope Benedict XVI and human rights groups to free her. She was sentenced to death earlier this month and has been in prison for the last year and a half.

ISLAMABAD // Pakistan's president may pardon a Christian woman facing a death sentence for blasphemy against Islam, officials said Saturday, as the mother of five tearfully denied the charge.

The case of Asia Bibi, 45, has drawn appeals from Pope Benedict XVI and human rights groups to free her. She was sentenced to death earlier this month and has been in prison for the last year and a half.

Bibi appeared in a televised interview at her prison Saturday, protesting her innocence to reporters and maintaining the case stemmed from a personal dispute.

"It was just the outcome of a rivalry. I would never even think of blasphemy," she said weeping. "I have small children. For God's sake, please set me free."

The verdict has drawn attention to Pakistan's blasphemy laws, which critics say are used to persecute Christian and other minorities and fan extremism. They are also often exploited to settle personal grudges.

Shahbaz Bhatti, Pakistan's minister for minority affairs, said Saturday that President Asif Ali Zardari has asked for a report on the case.

"The president has taken notice of this case ... he is concerned on this issue," Bhatti said, adding that Zardari has the power to pardon her even ahead of the court appeal.

Her husband says Bibi's original spat was in June 2009 with a group of Muslim women who refused to drink from the same water bowl as a Christian when they were picking fruit in an orchard in their village of Attian Wali, west of Lahore in Punjab province.

After Bibi argued with them, the women told the local imam that Bibi had insulted the Prophet Mohammed. The imam told the police and she was arrested. A local court sentenced her to death Nov. 8.

Dozens of Pakistanis - many of them Christians - are sentenced to death each year for blasphemy. Most cases are thrown out by higher courts and no executions have been carried out, Bhatti said, but the law is being examined to prevent what he said is widespread abuse by religious extremists and opportunists.

Punjab Gov. Salman Taseer told reporters in a televised conference he believes Zardari will soon pardon her.

"I am going to take this petition to president and the president will forgive her," he said.

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* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

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* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

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* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

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* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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2-bedroom apartment

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4-bedroom apartment

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5-bedroom apartment

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1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

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5-bedroom villa

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* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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4-bedroom apartment

Dh3,500

5-bedroom apartment

Dh4,000

1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

Dh2,700

3-bedroom villa

Dh3,850

4-bedroom villa

Dh4,800

5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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1-bedroom apartment

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2-bedroom apartment

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4-bedroom apartment

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5-bedroom apartment

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1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

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3-bedroom villa

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4-bedroom villa

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5-bedroom villa

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* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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1-bedroom apartment

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2-bedroom apartment

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4-bedroom apartment

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5-bedroom apartment

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1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

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3-bedroom villa

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4-bedroom villa

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5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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1-bedroom apartment

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2-bedroom apartment

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4-bedroom apartment

Dh3,500

5-bedroom apartment

Dh4,000

1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

Dh2,700

3-bedroom villa

Dh3,850

4-bedroom villa

Dh4,800

5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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4-bedroom apartment

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5-bedroom apartment

Dh4,000

1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

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4-bedroom villa

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* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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4-bedroom apartment

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5-bedroom apartment

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1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

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3-bedroom villa

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4-bedroom villa

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5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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4-bedroom apartment

Dh3,500

5-bedroom apartment

Dh4,000

1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

Dh2,700

3-bedroom villa

Dh3,850

4-bedroom villa

Dh4,800

5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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4-bedroom apartment

Dh3,500

5-bedroom apartment

Dh4,000

1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

Dh2,700

3-bedroom villa

Dh3,850

4-bedroom villa

Dh4,800

5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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1-bedroom apartment

Dh1,650

2-bedroom apartment

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3-bedroom apartment

Dh3,000

4-bedroom apartment

Dh3,500

5-bedroom apartment

Dh4,000

1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

Dh2,700

3-bedroom villa

Dh3,850

4-bedroom villa

Dh4,800

5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

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1-bedroom apartment

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4-bedroom apartment

Dh3,500

5-bedroom apartment

Dh4,000

1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

Dh2,700

3-bedroom villa

Dh3,850

4-bedroom villa

Dh4,800

5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

Quotations for a standard “silver” package:

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Price

Studio apartment

Dh1,350

1-bedroom apartment

Dh1,650

2-bedroom apartment

Dh2,000

3-bedroom apartment

Dh3,000

4-bedroom apartment

Dh3,500

5-bedroom apartment

Dh4,000

1-bedroom villa

Dh1,900

2-bedroom villa

Dh2,700

3-bedroom villa

Dh3,850

4-bedroom villa

Dh4,800

5-bedroom villa

Dh6,200

* Mr Usta packages with five service providers

* Includes: yearly AC maintenance, checks of electrical fittings & plumbing units, minor repairs, 1 handyman service, 5 emergency call-outs, 10% discount on out-of-scope jobs

* +Dh250 for maid’s rooms in apartments and +Dh500 for maid’s rooms in villas

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.

Haemoglobin disorders explained

Thalassaemia is part of a family of genetic conditions affecting the blood known as haemoglobin disorders.

Haemoglobin is a substance in the red blood cells that carries oxygen and a lack of it triggers anemia, leaving patients very weak, short of breath and pale.

The most severe type of the condition is typically inherited when both parents are carriers. Those patients often require regular blood transfusions - about 450 of the UAE's 2,000 thalassaemia patients - though frequent transfusions can lead to too much iron in the body and heart and liver problems.

The condition mainly affects people of Mediterranean, South Asian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern origin. Saudi Arabia recorded 45,892 cases of carriers between 2004 and 2014.

A World Health Organisation study estimated that globally there are at least 950,000 'new carrier couples' every year and annually there are 1.33 million at-risk pregnancies.