The Pakistan Supreme court affirmed the acquittal of Christian mother Asia Bibi on blasphemy charges Tuesday, with one judge concluding her accusers were guilty of perjury.
The London Daily Mail reported Pakistan Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa led the panel of judges that dismissed a petition filed by radical Islamic leaders in the Muslim-majority nation.
The Muslim leaders were demanding that Bibi be executed, regardless of the evidence.
The judge said Bibi’s accusers were guilty of perjury, and if the case had not been so sensitive, they should have been jailed for life.
“The image of Islam we are showing to the world gives me much grief and sorrow,” the judge said.
The mobs also threatened the kill the judges who acquitted her and her supporters.
Pakistan agreed to keep her in the country until the high court reviewed the petition against her Oct. 31 acquittal.
The acquittal sparked three days of mass protests and riots calling for her death, led by the radical Muslim party Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan. The protests stopped only after the government agreed to keep her in the country and not oppose the filing of any review petitions against the Supreme Court judgment.
Bibi was on death row for eight years after her conviction in 2010 under section 295-C of Pakistan’s penal code, which punishes blasphemy against Islam’s prophet. She was sentenced to execution by hanging.
The Daily Mail reported Bibi now will be reunited with her three daughters, who fled to Canada, where they were given asylum.
Her enemies have stated that there are “Muslims everywhere who want to kill her.”
Hafix Ehtisham Amhed, who is linked to the extremist Red Mosque group, claimed, “She deserves to be murdered according to Shariah.”
Bibi, a Catholic, was convicted of defiling the name of Muhammad when she declined instructions from her Muslim women coworkers to convert to Islam.
While no one has been executed for blasphemy in Pakistan in decades, many of the accused have been murdered by mobs while their cases were pending.
Her problems began when Muslim co-workers refused to drink water from a cup from which she had taken a sip and demanded she convert to Islam. Her refusal prompted a mob to later allege she had insulted Muhammad.
The Supreme Court ruled that the basis of the blasphemy charge was a “concocted” story and overturned the guilty verdict.
After her release Nov. 7 from Multan, Pakistan’s women prison, Bibi was flown to Islamabad and taken to an undisclosed place amid tight security, the news agency Dawn reported.