Pakistan Sets Free Christian Girl Accused of Blasphemy

RAWALPINDI, Pakistan (AP) — A young Christian girl accused of burning pages of the Koran was freed Saturday from a jail near the capital where she had been held for three weeks, a Pakistani jail official said.

The release a day after a judge granted her bail is another step closer to ending an episode that has focused an uncomfortable spotlight on Pakistan’s harsh blasphemy laws, which can result in life in prison or even death for defendants. Many critics say the laws are misused to wage vendettas or target Pakistan’s vulnerable minorities like the Christians.

The jail official, Mushtaq Awan, said the girl left the prison in Rawalpindi, a garrison city near Islamabad amid tight security.

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