Pakistan blasphemy girl in dramatic helicopter rescue

By REUTERS
September 8, 2012 17:33

 
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A Pakistani military helicopter plucked a young Christian girl accused of blasphemy from a prison yard on Saturday and flew her to a secret location after she was granted bail.

Live broadcasts showed heavily-armed police surrounding Rimsha Masih, believed to be no older than 14, covering her face with a green scarf as she walked to the helicopter.

A judge granted Masih bail on Friday and her lawyers are applying to have charges that she burned pages from the Koran dismissed after a local cleric was detained on suspicion of planting false evidence to stir resentment against Christians.

Even before that arrest, Masih's case provoked international concern as she could face execution under Pakistan's blasphemy law despite her young age and reported mental problems.

Despite international condemnation, the blasphemy law still enjoys widespread support among ordinary Pakistanis.

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