Asia Bibi – a Christian woman who spent eight years on death row in Pakistan for blasphemy – has left the country, it has been reported.
Bibi’s lawyer Saif ul Malook told Reuters the farm worker had travelled to Canada, with Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau having previously said his country was in talks with Pakistan about helping her.
“I have inquired within available channels, and according to them she has left for Canada,” he said.
Bibi, a mother of four, was convicted of blasphemy in 2010 after prosecutors alleged she had made derogatory comments about the Prophet Muhammad in a row over a bucket of water with her neighbours, who objected to her drinking from it because she was not Muslim.
She was thought to be the first woman sentenced to death in Pakistan for blasphemy.
Bibi’s conviction was overturned by Pakistan’s Supreme Court last year, but the decision sparked violent protests, with hardliners calling for the country’s strict blasphemy laws to be upheld.
Meanwhile, two politicians who sought to help her were assassinated, Reuters reported.
Following her release from prison, Bibi was held in a secret location while arrangements for her to leave the country were made.
It is thought that she will meet two of her daughters who have already been granted asylum in Canada.