Pakistani Islamist group to call off protests over freed Christian woman – spokesman

Asia

A Pakistani Islamist group said on Friday it will call off protests over the acquittal of a Christian woman who was facing hanging on blasphemy charges, striking a deal with the government to end three days of protests.

A man walks on a deserted road where authorities place shipping containers to stop protesters near
A man walks on a deserted road where authorities place shipping containers to stop protesters near Faizabad junction after the Supreme Court overturned the conviction of a Christian woman sentenced to death for blasphemy against Islam, in Islamabad, Pakistan November 2, 2018. REUTERS/Faisal Mahmood

ISLAMABAD: A Pakistani Islamist group said on Friday it will call off protests over the acquittal of a Christian woman who was facing hanging on blasphemy charges, striking a deal with the government to end three days of protests.

“We have reached on an agreement with the government,” Ejaz Ashrafi, spokesman for the ultra-Islamist Tehreek-e-Labaik (TLP) group, told Reuters. “An announcement will be made shortly by our leadership.”

On Wednesday, Pakistan’s Supreme Court overturned the conviction of Asia Bibi, a mother of five, and ordered her freed. She had been living on death row since 2010 after being convicted under Pakistan’s tough blasphemy laws.

(Reporting by Asif Shahzad; writing by Drazen Jorgic; editing by David Stamp)

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