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Asia Bibi: Pakistan acquits Christian woman sentenced to death

Ashiq Mesih and Eisham Ashiq, Asia Bibi's husband and daughter, speak to CNA in Rome, April 15, 2015. (Bohumil Petrik/CNA)

Pakistan’s Supreme Court has acquitted a Christian woman who was sentenced to death for blasphemy in 2010.

Asia Bibi was convicted after being accused of insulting Mohammed during a row with her neighbours over drinking water.

Chief Justice Saqib Nisarm said Bibi could walk free from jail in Sheikupura immediately if not wanted in connection with another case.

The judges said the case was based on flimsy evidence, and that the prosecution had “categorically failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt”.

The decision will likely enrage some Islamist groups, who had vowed to kill Bibi if her sentence is overturned.

The BBC reports there is a heavy police presence outside the Supreme Court, and that protesters are also gathering in Karachi, Lahore and Peshawar.

Bibi’s family say they fear for their safety and may now have to leave Pakistan.