Pakistan arrests 150 over violence at blasphemy protests

04 Nov 2018, 15:29

Pakistani protesters burn a poster image of Christian woman Asia Bibi, who has spent eight-years on death row accused of blasphemy and acquitted by a Supreme Court, in Hyderabad, Pakistan, Thursday, Nov. 1, 2018. Photo: Collected

Multan: Police in Pakistan say over 150 people have been arrested on charges of arson, vandalism and violence during the protests that erupted after a Christian woman was acquitted of blasphemy charges that carried the death penalty.

Senior police officer Nayab Haider said Sunday that police were using video clips to identify others involved in assaults, torching property and vehicles, and blocking highways.

Pakistan’s top court acquitted Asia Bibi on Wednesday in a move that infuriated hard-line Islamists, who held three days of nationwide protests demanding her execution. The Islamists ended the protests after the government agreed to impose a travel ban on Bibi and to allow her case to be reviewed.

Insulting Islam is punishable by death in Pakistan, and the mere rumor of doing so can incite lynchings.