The Foreign Office has dismissed media reports that Aasia Bibi has left Pakistan, saying that they were not true. This was stated by the ministry a few hours after her lawyer was quoted by the BBC saying that she had been put on a plane and flown outside Pakistan.
“Asia Bibi is in Pakistan. There is no truth in reports about Aasia Bibi leaving the country,” Foreign Office spokesman told Geo.
Antonio Tajani, President of the EU Parliament, tweeted Aasia Bibi has been transferred to a safe place in Pakistan. He thanked Pakistani authorities for the Christian woman’s release, saying he looks forward to meeting Bibi and her family in the European Parliament.
Aasia Bibi, a Catholic mother of five, was acquitted by the Supreme Court of Pakistan of blasphemy charges last week, a ruling which sparked nationwide protests.
The BBC quoted Aasia Bibi’s lawyer Saiful Mulook as saying that Aasia Bibi had been flown out of Pakistan after she was released from a women’s prison in Multan earlier during the day.
Her lawyer said that she had been flown out of Pakistan with her immediate family but they did not know where she had been taken to.
Aasia Bibi was facing charges of committing blasphemy since June 2009 when a row broke out between her and two women. The women alleged that she had committed blasphemy after a heated argument between them. Aasia Bibi has always denied the charges.
The Supreme Court of Pakistan heard her appeal in October 2018 against the death sentence issued by Lahore High Court. On October 31, the apex court acquitted her citing lack of evidence and contradiction among witness’ testimony.
Protests broke out across Pakistan immediately after the verdict was made public by the judiciary. TLP and supporters of religio-political parties took to the streets and rioted.