Bibi's lawyer flees Pakistan after threats

Bibi has been on death row since 2010 after being convicted of blasphemy against Islam

Bibi has been on death row since 2010 after being convicted of blasphemy against Islam

The husband of a Pakistani Christian woman acquitted of blasphemy after eight years on death row has pleaded for asylum from the UK, US or Canada.

According to Pakistani news source Dawn, the government have made an agreement with the Islamist political party Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), which coordinated the protests against Bibi's release.

According to Dawn, in exchange for the TLP halting the protests, the government has agreed to review an appeal of Bibi's acquittal, and to begin the process of placing her name on the "exit control list", which would prevent her from leaving the country.

Saif-ul-Mulook's latest victory saw the freeing of Asia Bibi, who spent almost a decade on death row, after the Supreme Court overturned her sentence on Wednesday.

"I need to stay alive as I still have to fight the legal battle for Asia Bibi", he said.

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Bibi had repeatedly appealed her sentence.

The federal and Punjab governments had entered into negotiations with the TLP leaders and ulema in Lahore to resolve the issue amicably, but there was no success despite several rounds of talks.

Her acquittal triggered massive protests by TLP, which paralysed parts of the country for three days, blocking roads and disrupting traffic.

"I request [US] President Donald Trump to help us leave (the country), and I request the prime minister of the United Kingdom to do their level best to help us, to grant us freedom", Masih said in a video message, according to news agencies. Malook told The Associated Press earlier this week that he would have to leave Pakistan because the followers of hard-line cleric Khadim Hussain Rizvi had threatened to kill him as well as the judges who acquitted Bibi.

Asia Bibi's husband, Ashiq Masih, said they were in great danger in Pakistan. They still haven't seen their mother.

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After nearly four days of protests and riots throughout Pakistan over Asia Bibi case's verdict, PTI's leadership finally tried to manage the commotion.

On Saturday, Bibi's lawyer Saif-ul-Mulook, left the country owing to threats to his life.

In a video message, Mr Masih said he feared for his family's safety.

The blasphemy charges stemmed from an argument over a cup of water in June 2009.

The government further promised to take appropriate legal action to redress any deaths that may have occurred during the protests against the Aasia Bibi verdict and to release all people picked up in connection with the protests starting October 30. Two politicians who had tried to help her have been assassinated.

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"The TLP called openly for murder and mutiny, made a mockery of the rule of law and fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution, and appears to have assumed all the while that its methods were legitimate means of dissent", the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan said in a statement Sunday. "The state will not ignore the rebellion".

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